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News update
24/05/2024
News update

Breaking News: NDIS Provider and Worker Registration Taskforce provides update

Taskforce says there is more work to do before they take recommendations to government.
News update
23/05/2024
News update

NDS analyses the federal budget for opportunities and challenges for NDIS reform

The federal budget, tabled just over a week ago, promised improvements in the NDIS while moderating scheme growth — we break it down.

PACE refinements on the way to reduce issues for providers

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1/05/2024

What you need to know

  • The NDIA are aware of sector issues with the PACE system and have planned system improvements.
  • Around 10 per cent of participants have an NDIS plan in PACE and about 5000 providers are claiming payments on the new system.
  • NDS has published a deep dive into the most common PACE issues for providers and what improvements can be expected for each.
  • We expect the next period of the PACE rollout will focus on improving the user experience instead of introducing new functions.
  • Providers wishing to help the NDIA improve the provider experience with PACE can submit an EOI by Monday 13 May.

As the national rollout of the NDIA’s new computer system, PACE, bubbles away, NDS continues to hear from members how problems with the PACE transition increases pressures in an already tight operating environment.

Providers using PACE speak about long delays for payment, technical barriers in using the My NDIS Provider Portal, and the difficulty in getting effective troubleshooting support. Other providers report the worrying cost of the transition and getting their team up to speed with the changes. NDS has published a deep dive explainer to help new staff understand PACE, as well as troubleshooting advice on the common issues.

The NDIA tells us that many of the problems providers report to us are known system issues for which they have scheduled system improvements. They include:

  • moving payment enquiries from the myplace provider portal to the My NDIS Provider Portal from Monday 6 May
  • refining how providers are identified and recorded as a My Provider at planning and reassessment meetings
  • broadening the categories of providers able to “self-service” and request a My Provider relationship through their My NDIS Provider Portal
  • improving how the My NDIS Provider Portal displays participants that providers have a My Provider relationship with
  • addressing the causes behind the “Oops, something went wrong!” error messages that providers are seeing.

NDS will keep speaking to members to see if these improvements, expected in May and July, are hitting the mark.

What to expect next

Even before the Tasmanian trial in 2022, NDS and other provider peaks began advocating for system improvements that allow services to focus on delivering disability supports instead of troubleshooting tech transformations.

With recent months seeing new technical elements and more participants introduced to PACE, we understand that the NDIA intends the next period of the rollout to focus on refinements to existing functions and improving the user experience.

Providers should not expect the design principles of PACE to be rolled back. Specifically, providers should not expect the My NDIS Provider Portal to host all the personal information needed to deliver personalised supports to NDIS participants.

Improving the experience

Provider peaks have been asked to support the participant-centred design principles of PACE and the role that participants have in taking leadership of their plan in the NDIS marketplace.

While NDS understands that more consultation and resources are planned, the NDIS has a suite of PACE resources for participants on working with providers and tip sheets for participants implementing their NDIS plan. They will help participants and their representatives compare providers and pricing, share agreed personal information with their chosen service, and help providers deliver personalised supports to them.

NDS will keep working with the NDIA on improving outcomes for both providers and participants using PACE.

If your organisation would like to contribute to NDIA consultations to improve PACE, expressions of interest with your contact details can be sent to ndiatransition.providers@ndis.gov.au by Monday 13 May. The NDIA encourages applications from providers who have a good understanding of their organisation’s operations and feel comfortable using the myplace provider portal and my NDIS provider portal.

New to PACE?

NDS recommends that members who have not yet worked in the new system should familiarise themselves with PACE resources so they can adapt their procedures and prepare their staff for the changes. For example:

Relieving pricing pressures for providers

As our members experience sector uncertainty over reform, PACE-related operational pressures are an added weight on their shoulders. One key to a successful PACE transition must be relieving pricing pressures, which has been a focus of recent NDS advocacy:

  • Ahead of the Federal Budget in May, NDS has called for a $1 billion fund to boost NDIS services and measures that support sector transformation over the next five years.
  • NDS has made its submission to the NDIS Annual Price Review which, alongside a joint statement with other provider peaks, calls for NDIS prices that reflect the true costs of operating.
  • Members can continue to support our pricing advocacy by using this sample letter and messaging to engage their federal member and state or territory minister.
Contact information
Jeremy Farley, Senior Policy Officer – Member Advocacy, 07 3828 9407, submit enquiry/feedback