New data projects “unconscionable” closure of disability services
A mass exodus of disability providers is on the horizon, as rising costs make it virtually impossible for many to continue their services, according to new data from peak body National Disability Services (NDS).
With recent changes to the NDIS pricing model, coupled with rising insurance costs, the financial viability of providers around the country is dwindling.
The survey data, commissioned by NDS shows:
- 83 per cent of providers say they have concern regarding their ability to deliver disability services using the new price limits in this financial year
- 32 per cent of providers had trouble accessing insurance required to run their disability services in the last 12 months
- The NDIA’s new payment system PACE is expected to be rolled out later this year. 59 per cent of providers expressed concern that their organisation will have the capacity to adapt to this new system.
CEO of VIC-based child disability provider, Biala, David Greenwood said “As a not for profit working exclusively with children we feel we are one of the organisations most hit by a lack of price increase. Working with children in their natural setting is becoming unviable under the NDIS.”
“We are now at the stage where we will see providers exit the market and our concern is for the children and families we support. The result of the pricing strategy (for organisations such as ours) will see children exiting services and joining ever increasing wait lists, which is unconscionable.”
NDS CEO Laurie Leigh said “The federal government is on notice: the current pricing arrangements are not sustainable. Without pricing adequate to cover costs a majority of disability service providers are now concerned that they will be simply unable to continue to provide the essential supports that people with disability rely on.”
“The government talks a lot about cracking down on NDIS fraud, as they should, but what are they doing to support the vast majority of providers who are doing the right thing and struggling to cover the costs of compliance, training and insurance?
“We are calling on the Minister to urgently address the concerns of the sector outside of the NDIS Review and Annual Pricing Review and consider an out-of-cycle pricing update to prevent this impending walk-out.”