Establishing the NDIA as market steward

Market Approach

The NDIS Market Approach (Statement of Opportunity and Intent) (PDF) was published in November 2016 to outline the role of the Agency as a market steward during transition to full Scheme.

The Market Approach outlines how the Agency will work with industry and the wider community, as Scheme stakeholders, to support major growth in the number, range and size of disability support providers and the services they offer. The Agency recognises that for businesses of all sizes and types to confidently and sustainably grow and innovate under the Scheme, they require as much clarity as possible about market development, including what they can expect from the Agency.

Where market problems are observed, such as participants not being able to access services to support the achievement of their goals, the NDIA will consider how to improve the situation and make the right changes. This is an important role in creating a new market (for disability supports) where participants are the customer. Many providers will need to adapt to the new environment where the customer, not the government, decides what is needed.

Market position statements

The final suite of market position statements were delivered in 2016-17; Tasmania in July 2016, the in September 2016 and the Northern Territory in January 2017.

The statements help providers, as well as participants and intermediaries understand the developing local markets they operate in. This assists these three essential groups to make informed decisions now and to identify challenges and opportunities for the future.

The market position statements provide information down to regional or local government area level and include information on the estimated demand for supports, a picture of market supply and incorporate insights from providers that operate in these local markets.

“Across Australia, new providers are emerging to fill gaps in the disability support market. While adapting to a transformation of this size can be challenging, the overwhelming majority of providers are excited about their growth prospects under the NDIS.”

– The Hon Jane Prentice MP, Assistant Minister for Social Services and Disability Services

Pricing

Changes to price controls for 2017–18

Each year pricing arrangements applicable to NDIS supports and services are reviewed by the Agency. This year’s review was focussed on personal care and community participation supports.

As part of the review the Agency released a discussion paper in March 2017 and invited submissions from the public. In total, 85 respondents contributed to the review on a range of issues including the hourly rate for attendant care.

The key changes to price controls, which took effect on 1 July 2017, were:

  • Changes to maximum prices for NDIS supports and services:
    • daily activity and community participation;
    • other supports including those related to Capacity Building; and
    • capital related supports (Consumer Price Index increase only).
  • Loadings for Remote and Very Remote Areas:
    • 2017–18 prices will be 20 per cent higher for remote areas and 25 per cent higher for very remote areas, reflecting the most up-to-date loadings from the Independent Hospital Pricing Authority.
  • Therapy services cancellation policies:
    • to improve consistency across support types, providers will be able to charge for up to two participant cancellations for therapeutic supports per annum.

The stakeholder submissions received during the price review will be used to inform future pricing decisions and support other initiatives, such as the NDIS provider benchmarking project.

While price caps will remain in place during the rapid ramp-up of the Scheme as the market matures, it is envisaged prices will be gradually deregulated and determined by market forces.

Independent Pricing Review

The Agency announced an Independent Pricing Review in June 2017. This was in response to the wide range of pricing issues raised in participant and provider workshops, and in the Productivity Commission’s Review of NDIS costs. McKinsey & Company is undertaking the review and will report key findings by the end of the year.

Launch of the AllPlay Dance project, in a dance studio.

AllPlay Dance, a new initiative to give children with disability a chance to express themselves through dance, was awarded $627,000 under the NDIS  National Readiness Grants program.

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