National Disability Insurance Scheme

The roll-out of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) represents an exciting time for Down Syndrome Victoria, as the sector moves towards a new system that provides greater choice and control to people with disability. The NDIS will deliver individualised funding to allow people with disability greater input to the development of their support package. This means that funds will be provided directly to the individual requiring support. During the transition to the NDIS, Down Syndrome Victoria’s focus is to continue to provide quality supports and services to people with Down syndrome and their families.

What is the National Disability Insurance Scheme?

The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is the new insurance scheme that funds supports required by people with a disability underpinned by principles of choice and control, a lifelong approach to planning and early intervention. The Scheme aims to support participants (i.e. people who are supported by the Scheme) to increase their independence and social and economic participation through access to mainstream and community services that meet their needs.

The NDIS has developed a brochure My pathway, my choices, my goals — Information for participants that explains more about eligibility, access and the Scheme. The NDIS has powers legislated in the National Disability Insurance Scheme Act 2013. You can view more information regarding the legislation on the NDIS website.

Who are the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA)?

The National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) is an independent statutory body with the mandate to implement the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) in trial sites across Australia including the Barwon region in Victoria. NDIA is the contact point to access support. They determine eligibility and allocate resources. The NDIA is responsible for the undertaking planning with participants.

After plans are approved, a Local Area Coordinator (LAC) will assist the participant to access the supports identified in their plan from registered providers. There are currently more than 400 registered providers in Barwon and this number is growing all of the time. The term ‘Provider’ refers to organisations like Down Syndrome Victoria who provide supports and services to people with disability under the Scheme.  

The Geelong NDIA Office
168-170 Little Malop Street Geelong, Victoria 3220

Where are the trial sites?

The trial site for the NDIS in Victoria is located in the Barwon region which is the Geelong area. People with disability in the trial site area will be transitioned to the NDIS by September 2014 and will have plans in place to access the support they want from the providers they choose. Trial sites were also commenced in July 2013 in South Australia, New South Wales and Tasmania. As of July 2014, there are also trial sites in the ACT, Northern Territory Barkly Region and in Western Australia. The trial sites are helping the NDIA to learn about the best ways to deliver the services they offer for full scheme implementation commencing in 2016.

Who is eligible?

To be eligible you must be living in the Barwon Region and be under 65 years-of-age; have been residing in the trial site before 1 July 2013; be an Australian citizen or permanent resident; have a disability that is attributable to one or more intellectual, cognitive, neurological, sensory or physical impairments or to one or more impairments attributable to a psychiatric condition that effects your capacity to function in one or more areas of daily living and is likely to mean you need support for your life time OR meet the early intervention requirements of the scheme (for children with developmental delay).

You can find out if you are eligible for NDIS funding through a tool called My Access Checker. This tool has been designed to help people with permanent and significant disability understand whether they may be able to access assistance from the NDIS during the trial period. 

For information on eligibility, please visit the NDIS website or contact the National Disability Insurance Agency on 1800 800 110.

Can someone come and speak to me about Down Syndrome Victoria's transition to the NDIS?

If you would like to have someone speak to you about Down Syndrome Victoria’s transition towards the NDIS please contact our office on 1300 658 873 or e-mail