Fiona Phipps Manager Disability Services at RFW outlined for us how the National Disability Insurance Scheme will operate. It is a huge change for the disability 
sector it provides funds for 0-65 year olds who have a significant function  impairment in one or more domains.
 
Fiona described the difficulties that were encountered when the NDIS was first announced. No planning had been done! Fiona likened the process of establishing 
the NDIS to, "building the plane whilst flying". It's now known the scheme covers all Australians between the ages 0-65 who have a disability. It covers not just congenital conditions but also abnormalities acquired 
through illness and accident.
 
Traditional block funding of providers will cease from July 2018 and the sector is moving into an open marketplace. The NDIS allocates funds to clients/patients with chronic conditions following diagnosis. Under the NDIS clients access the services they choose, tailoring the program they believe will suit them best using the funds they have been allocated. The scheme relies on participants being able to manage the treatment regime of their condition themselves. 
 
The NDIS is a functional model, measuring progress and achievement of clients as they participate in their chosen program. No guidance regarding the assessment of progress was included in the NDIS guidelines although the program must include goals and measures of achievement. 
 
Rollout will start in NSW IN July 2017 with full implementation from July 2018. Fiona also provided a very brief overview of Windmill Program that is the disability specific service RFW is rolling out from November that allows families who receive the BetterStart and Helping Children with Autism ($12,000 from diagnosis to aged 7 purchase individual intensive services from RFW. 
 
Maggie thanked Fiona for an excellent and informative presentation.