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Media release
Media release

Morrison Government returns to office with NDIS as a priority

NDS congratulates Prime Minister Scott Morrison and the Coalition following their win in the Federal Election over the weekend.
News update
News update

Coroner recommends providers review ‘swallowing’ policies and guidelines

Providers are encouraged to review their policies and guidelines for services to people with swallowing difficulties, following coronial findings in Queensland.

DES - The first six months

blurry people


The first six months of the new Disability Employment Services contract concludes with the resolution of several payment problems and an early indication that the number of job seekers accessing DES is increasing.  Following strong advice from NDS, the Department of Social Service (DSS) has recognised that certain elements of the new DES funding model require urgent modification. Several payment problems for DES providers have arisen, including: • participants assigned an incorrect funding level by the new funding model• service fees paid under the previous contract subject to the new contract’s pro-rata arrangements• incorrect pro-rating of service fees following a novation.In mid-November, a correction to the funding model resulted in 28 per cent of DES participants moving up one or more funding levels. Two-thirds of participants’ funding remained unchanged and about 6 per cent of participants had their funding decreased. Participants with reduced funding levels in Post Placement Support will have their outcomes paid at their anchored rate. Providers are currently being reimbursed in full by DSS for any underpayments, with completion of all reimbursements expected by early 2019. A fix implemented from December will prevent service fees paid under the previous contract being subject to the new contract’s pro-rata arrangements. By early 2019, DSS will reimburse providers for any amounts recovered in error. An estimated 93 providers will receive a share of $3.8 million in reimbursements.Service fee errors affecting 14 contract novations were rectified this month and a fix will be implemented in March 2019. DSS will notify all affected providers, while novations undertaken before March 2019 will be subject to manual recovery and reimbursement of fees. Referrals increase

In an early but promising trend, by the end of October, referrals to DES under the new contract had risen 38 per cent, which is equivalent to 3,300 people each month. People with physical disability accessing the DMS stream has increased 75 per cent. In ESS, there has been a 90 per cent increase in people referred with psychiatric disability and a 60 per cent increase in people with intellectual disability - coming off a low base figure of around 315 per month. Of particular note is the increase in the number of DSP-recipients and people not in receipt of income support entering DES. Providers are connecting deeper into the community and attracting people who don’t have participation requirements and have not had a previous relationship with DES. This was one of the aims of the government’s reforms. School leavers

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