Ensuring a quality experience for participants that promotes better outcomes lies at the core of all that the NDIA does. This allows participants to enter the NDIS in a streamlined and efficient way and makes it a value-adding experience.
In April 2017, it became clear that the experience for participants was not aligned to the high standards to which the NDIA aspires. As a consequence, the Board and management of the NDIA initiated a Participant and Provider Pathway Review (the Review).
The Review aims to find strategies and solutions to improve the way the NDIA interacts with participants and providers to make their experience more positive.
From April to June 2017, the Agency worked individually and in workshops with more than 300 participants, providers, peak disability bodies and other stakeholders from all states and territories. Out of that process, 400 specific improvement ideas and 200 solutions have been generated.
Initial findings of the Review have identified a range of suggestions to improve the quality of the participant and provider experience, including:
- a need to more specifically identify the mainstream and information supports that exist for a participant;
- a greater outcomes focus throughout a participant’s life;
- more active involvement with communities;
- more face-to-face (rather than telephone) communications, including planning meetings;
- fewer participant hand-offs between staff;
- a significant improvement in the quality of the portal; and
- a more responsive call centre experience.
Starting in the 2017–18 financial year, the NDIA and its Partners will implement a revised and more cohesive end-to-end approach for participants and providers.
While full implementation of the Pathway Review recommendations is a priority, timing will depend on retraining employees, implementing system changes and improving communications. The Agency will test any proposed changes with participants and providers to evaluate their effectiveness before implementation on a national basis. The process of implementation will also reflect the severity of a person’s disability as well as an individual’s demographic and geographic situation.
“Our aim is to deliver a high-quality experience for participants and providers in a way that is consistent with maintaining the Scheme’s financial sustainability. While the NDIS is already changing peoples’ lives for the better, the Pathway Review is an opportunity to collaborate with participants and providers to improve overall outcomes.”
– Robert De Luca, NDIA CEO