It’s probably taken a fair bit of planning and paperwork, but you’ve finally received your NDIS plan. Now that you’ve got it in your hot little hands, you might be wondering—what next?
Before you can start reaping the benefits of your brand new plan, there’s a few things to do that will help you get the most out of it. Take these six steps before you do anything else and navigating your new NDIS plan will be a breeze!
Read your plan thoroughly
It’s most important that you understand all the details of your plan to ensure you make decisions that support your best path forward. The document will be comprehensive and some of the language might be confusing so it’s possible it won’t make sense immediately. It might be a good idea to speak with a friend or family member, or even a service provider you know well, to help you decipher it. You’ll need to start using your plan as soon as possible. It’s considered active from the approval date and any existing funding is immediately replaced. So don’t put off reviewing it!
Get acquainted with the online portal
‘Myplace’ via the NDIS participant portal is a secure website through which you can review and manage your plan. The letter you received when your plan was approved would have included your activation code. You’ll need a myGov account to access the portal and then you link it to ‘myplace’. Your activation code will expire within 10 days, so you should do this as soon as possible. If you don’t use the code within the required time, simply contact your planner and they will organise a new one for you.
Familiarise yourself with the different funding categories
This is an especially important step if you’re self-managing your NDIS plan. Here is a helpful breakdown to help you understand what types of services fall under which category:
|Support Purpose||Outcomes Framework Domain||Support Category (Plan Budget)|
|Core||Daily Living||1. Assistance with Daily Life|
|Daily Living||2. Transport|
|Daily Living||3. Consumables|
|Social and Community Participation||4. Assistance with Social and Community Participation|
|Capital||Daily Living||5. Assistive Technology|
|Capacity building||Choice and Control||7. Coordination of Supports|
|Home||8. Improved Living Arrangements|
|Social and Community Participation||9. Increased Social and Community Participation|
|Work||10. Finding and Keeping a Job|
|Relationships||11. Improved Relationships|
|Health and Wellbeing||12. Improved Health and Wellbeing|
|Lifelong Learning||13. Improved Learning|
|Choice and Control||14. Improved Life Choices|
|Daily Living||15. Improved Daily Living Skills|
Your three main funding categories are:
Core: this is any activity that helps you with everyday living. Your core budget is flexible and can be used across all four support categories as per the table above.
Capital: this is funding for any support equipment for your home or vehicle. This aspect of funding is quite specific and must be used for exactly what the NDIS allocates.
Capacity Building: this is any activity that assists you to develop existing or learn new skills. Think finding a job, getting assistance with your NDIS plan or transitioning to independent living arrangements. There is flexibility here, like with your core budget, but funds will need to be used within the support category as per the table above.
Think about what you want to get out of your NDIS program
Ultimately, it’s up to you what you choose to do with your NDIS funding. You’re the custodian of deciding which providers to deliver your services. So, take some time to think about what the best solution for you will be.
Connect with whoever will help you start using your plan
If you have a service provider, this is the time to get them on board. Discuss your goals with them and they can provide advice on your best options. You might have a planner as part of your agreement and, if so, they will be reaching out soon after your plan is approved to help you through all of the steps listed here, as well as helping you to choose and make agreements with your service providers.
Choose and make agreements with your preferred service providers
Once you’ve decided on your best services and chosen providers, it’s time to reach out and make agreements with them! Your support coordinator can help you with this step too. You might want to continue using a provider you’ve been using up until now and that’s entirely possible. You’ll just need to advise them of your new plan and set up a new service agreement with them. Your service agreement is an outline of how your preferred services will be delivered and is an important part of your agreement with your service providers.
So that’s it! Hopefully now you’re feeling a little more confident on how to approach your brand new NDIS agreement. If you need any further support, feel free to get in touch with our friendly team here.