Minister for the NDIS, Linda Reynolds, has confirmed that the NDIS will not proceed with introducing independent assessments. This is welcome news for people with MS, other disabilities, advocates, service providers and numerous others who have expressed their concern about this reform over the past few months.
The announcement of the proposed introduction of the independent assessments to the NDIS in August last year caused significant anxiety for many people living with MS, their families and carers. MS Australia was also concerned that the proposed framework was rushed and that it had the potential to add considerable distress and trauma to the lives of people living with disability associated with their MS.
“This is a welcome outcome for MS Australia and the MS community,” says Rohan Greenland, CEO of MS Australia. “We welcome the Minister’s announcement and look forward to continuing to play a constructive role in our on-going discussions with the Government and the NDIA.”
“Participants need stability and security with their NDIS applications and plans, and it’s important that we recognise the benefits that can be achieved when assessors have a good understanding of their chronic condition.”
MS Australia would like to thank everyone in the MS community who contributed to our submissions and lobbying efforts by sharing their stories, including representatives of our state organisations who assist people to navigate the NDIS. You can read our submission to the Joint Standing Committee on the NDIS inquiry into independent assessments under the NDIS here.
We would also like to thank the Australian Government for acknowledging the difficulties that these assessments presented, and MS Australia looks forward to consultation on a new person-centred assessment model in the near future.
MS Australia will continue to advocate for better care and support of people living with MS.