NDIS Glossary of Terms

This glossary of terms is used by our participants for NDIS Service Agreements.

Advocacy: Representing the concerns and interests of Participants and carers, speaking on their behalf, and providing training and support to enable them to represent themselves.

Advocacy services: Services specialising in the representation of people with a disability, their views and interests.

Agency: The National Disability Insurance Scheme Launch Transition Agency has been established by the Australian Government to implement the first stage of a National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). The name of the scheme is Disability Care Australia. The Agency will work to ensure improved support for people with a disability, their family and carers, and to deliver the first stage of an NDIS.

Agreement: A document that sets out the rights and obligations of service Participants and service providers. The agreement may cover a variety of issues relating to service provision, including care, fees and charges, the rights and responsibilities of the service provider and care recipient, and any extra services.

Assessment: Ongoing process beginning with first Participant contact and continuing throughout the intervention and maintenance phases to termination of contact. The major goals of assessment are (a) identification of vulnerable or likely cases; (b) diagnosis; (c) choice of optimal treatment; and (d) evaluation of the effectiveness of the treatment.

Assistive technology: Specialised equipment that enhances an individual’s participation and independence in their daily lives. Examples of assistive technology include speech generating devices and communication aids, computers, powered mobility equipment, specialised wheelchair seating and walkers.

Carer: A person who provides any informal ongoing assistance, in terms of help or supervision, to persons with disabilities. Assistance to a person in a different household relates to ‘everyday types of activities’, without specific information on the activities. Where the care recipient lives in the same household, the assistance is for one or more of the following activities:

· cognition or emotion

· communication

· health care

· housework

· meal preparation

· mobility

· paperwork

· property maintenance

· self care

· transport.

Communication aids and devices: help people with complex communication needs communicate, by supporting or replacing their speech. There are high technology options which use computers and specialised software and include speech generating devices. These allow an individual to produce or select messages for communication. Low technology options include simple technologies, communication boards or communication books. These options show pages of pictures and/or letters and words that a person with complex communication needs can point to in order to communicate (also see PODD communication books).

Community-based supports: Services or supports within communities that can be used by everyone. Eg. this might be a health service or home cleaning.

Community access: A service which supports people to go to local places and community activities such as social groups, libraries and general community services.

Complaints Policy: A document that talks about the steps a service will take when a person makes a complaint about them. It also talks about what the person who is making the complaint has to do.

Day services: provide daytime support for people in their communities. Activities vary between day service centres as they’re based on individuals’ choices and interests and include swimming, art and music programs and woodwork.

Disability Act 2006: talks about the rules and guidelines that disability services have to follow. The Act talks about things like the rights and responsibilities of people with disabilities and rules for services. (Applies to Victoria only)

Disability Support Register: is a system that records information about a person’s support needs. This helps keep track of who needs what so that when services and resources become available, they can be given to people in a way that is fair and happens more quickly.

Easy English: An Easy English document is one that is written in simple and plain language so that it is easy to understand. More documents that are produced by the Government are now being offered in Easy English.

Evaluation: The process used to describe the process of measuring the value or worth of a program or service.

Formal Supports: are those that people pay for. Formal supports might be community-based (like paying for house-cleaning through a local council) or might be disability specific (like paying for a support worker).

Guardian: A person who has been given the legal power to make important personal decisions on behalf of another adult. This might include decisions about where the person should live or what kind of health care and services the person should have.

Independent living training service: provides support to people who want to gain skills and confidence in a range of activities, which will allow them greater independence and control in their day-to-day lives.

Informal supports: Supports offered by family and friends and others in the community.

Local Area Coordinators (LAC): work to increase community inclusion and support people with disabilities. They connect participants with mainstream services and local, community based supports and help participants to realise their plan by building individual and informal support capacity. They provide information to those people who are not eligible as participants of NDIS about other appropriate services.

Outcome: A measurable positive change in the well-being of a participant supported through NDIS which is attributable to the interventions or services they have received.

Participant: a person with a disability who is eligible to receive care and support through the National Disability Insurance Scheme and who is utilising, or who has utilised, a service.

Planner: A NDIS Planner works with participants to identify support needs including access to mainstream supports and community life to enable a good life and enable progress with the participant’s goals and aspirations.

Policies and Procedures Manual: talks about how a service should run. It should also have information available about how the service will respond in certain situations such as when someone makes a complaint.

Power of Attorney: A document by which a person appoints someone else, usually a trusted family member or friend, to act as their agent with authority to deal with and manage their property and other financial affairs.

Registered Disability Service Providers are agencies that are funded by DHS to provide services for people with a disability. These services must follow the guidelines in the Disability Act 2006. A list of all registered services can be found on the Department website. It is called the Register of Disability Service Providers. (Applies to Victoria only)

Residential Care: is provided to people with a disability who cannot live independently at home and who have been assessed as needing this care.

Respite: Respite care services help carers take breaks from their caring role. A range of respite care services are available, including respite in the person’s home, in a day care centre in the community or in a residential facility. Respite can be provided by family members, friends, neighbours or trained workers.

Self-determination: The entitlement of people to have control over their destiny and to be treated respectfully – it is founded in International Rights law.

Service provider: Organization, business or individual that offers service to others in exchange for payment.

Support Plan Review: Is the process of looking at a current support plan to see if there need to be any changes. This should happen at least every three years, or a participant can ask NDIS to have a review at any time.