Your NDIS planning meeting is an integral stage in your NDIS journey. Primarily because what you discuss in this meeting will determine what’s included in your plan.
While, of course, each meeting is adapted to the individual, a general format is followed. It’s helpful to be prepared so that you know what to expect. With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the key things that are covered in your NDIS meeting so you can go in feeling confident you can answer everything you will be asked.
What’s your story?
Your planner will need to fill out your ‘participant statement’. This is basically your story; a snapshot of your life. It goes into the ‘about me’ section of your NDIS plan and your planner will guide you through everything they need to know. Sometimes it can feel like we’re put on the spot when we answer questions about our life—it can be hard to know what to say! So, while of course it is entirely personal, you might like to inform them about:
- Your health needs
- Your living situation
- How you get around
- Any specific hobbies or interests you have
What are your needs?
Once they have a complete picture of your circumstances, your planner will ask you about what kind and what level of assistance you need for everyday living. To do this, they use a questionnaire called the WHODAS (World Health Organisation Disability Assessment Schedule). This questionnaire asks you a number of questions related to functional tasks and asks you to rank your ability to perform them. These responses will help to identify the type and level of funding you receive as part of your NDIS plan, so be as specific and accurate as you can. Those under 17 answer the PEDICAT, which is very similar to the WHODAS, but adapted to minors.
What are your goals?
Your goals are the basis of your NDIS plan—your support and funding are directly related to them. So, this is a significant aspect of your planning meeting! You will be asked about both short-term and long-term goals. Your short-term goals are those that you want to achieve within the next 1-2 years while your long-term goals are those you’d like to accomplish within 2-5 years. It’s a good idea to have thought carefully about what you most want to achieve to ensure you get the most out of your NDIS plan.
The impact statement
This can be an uncomfortable part of the planning meeting but it’s also an important part of helping to create a plan that is relevant to your unique needs. Your ‘impact statement’ helps the NDIS to understand how your disability affects those around you, especially your primary carer. This might trigger an emotional reaction is both of you. If it feels right, you might like to consider having a conversation with your primary carer before your meeting and discuss this so that, when it is brought up in the meeting, you’re both comfortable with what will be shared.
The other aspect of your impact statement is to decipher whether you might need support managing your NDIS plan. If you request to have support managing the financial aspects of your plan, legally the NDIS has to include ‘plan management’ in your plan. The planner will also discuss whether you feel you would like support finding and connecting with service providers. If you indicate this is something you would like, and you meet the eligibility criteria, you may also have support coordination included in your plan.
Is there anything else?
To finish, you will be asked by your planner if there is anything else that has not already been discussed that you would like to add. Take your time and think carefully about whether anything has been missed or if you’re content that everything has been covered. Before you end the meeting, it’s a good idea to ensure you have your planner’s contact details so you can connect with them if anything comes up after the meeting.
We hope this helps you to feel a little more confident as you prepare for your NDIS planning meeting. Remember, we’re here to help if you have any questions or would like some additional support.