A spokesperson for the National Disability Insurance Agency says there is work to be done to improve people’s experience with the scheme.
“While 83 per cent of surveyed participants recently rated their experience either good or very good - the NDIA acknowledges that this is not reflective of everyone’s experience with the NDIS,” they said.
“Improving people’s experience and interaction with the NDIS is a matter of the highest priority for the NDIA.
“Ongoing work continues to improve the quality of experience participants receive under the NDIS including comprehensive work to improve the experience of people with more complex needs.”
Members of a local disability support group are frustrated navigating the National Disability Insurance Scheme, with many feeling they are in a worse position than before the scheme started.
Quality Living Options Bendigo president Noela Foreman said parents hoping for appropriate accommodation and care for adult children found the system unnecessarily complex.
Her group was a non-for-profit pushing for accommodation for adult children with intellectual disabilities before their parents were unable to care for them.
“They have enough to deal with in caring for their kids without having to pass through all the various road blocks that occur along the way to get the care and assistance they need,” she said.
“We need people to help us find our way through to the point that we are aiming for,” she said.
Not being able to secure necessary funding for children’s future housing needs had been frustrating.
“Most of the parents in our group are worse off than they were before under the previous system,” she said.
Even finding information on housing allowances had proven challenging for many members, Dr Foreman said.
Most of the group’s members were in their 70s and 80s and Dr Foreman said they were concerned about where their kids would live when they could no longer look after them.
Bendigo Lisa Chesters said the group had outlined a list of problems with the NDIS rollout including failure to receive proper advice, reductions in funding after the first year, lack of staff to handle enquiries, incorrect assessments leading to loss of funding and a breakdown of support to care for their children.
She said problems implementing the NDIS was damaging the quality of care central Victorians were receiving.
“What we’ve learnt from talking to people here in Bendigo is that if you are someone with a physical disability or a mobility issue accessing the NDIS has been relatively smooth,” she said.
“If you are someone with an intellectual disability or mental health concerns your parents or family are saying it’s extremely hard. There’s a real lack of skill and understanding.”
The government has been contacted for comment.
More to come.