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The NDIS Commission's First Annual Report

The NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission has released it’s first annual report, get the scoop here.

By Jessica Quilty

Updated 15 Apr 202420 Nov 2019

The NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission (NDIS Commission) dropped its first annual report last month. Here’s a quick rundown.

Registrations

The first year saw 8302 providers registered or renewed with the NDIS Commission in NSW and SA. 1749 registrations lapsed, 92% of which were reportedly inactive. The most popular registration group was therapeutic supports.

 

Illustrative Chart Registration Groups - NDIS Commission Annual Report 2018 - 2019

Complaints

The NDIS Commission received 1422 complaints – more than half which came from ‘a person with disability’ or their family or friend. More than half of these related to the very broad category of ‘provider practice’. The complaints process was completed for 1063 of these complaints with less than half being handled within six weeks (47%). Analysis will continue following the transition of the other states and territories to help refine benchmark timeframes for complaint resolution.

Illustrative Complaints Chart NDIS Commission Annual Report 2018-2019

Reportable incidents

There was over 4500 reportable incidents notified to the Commission last financial year which seems pretty huge given we are only talking SA and NSW. There were 1925 alleged incidents of abuse and neglect, another alarming figure, but it is unclear from the report how many of those allegations were substantiated.

1618 reported incidents related to the unauthorised use of restrictive practice. Restrictive practices need to be reported to the NDIS Commission as a reportable incident in a number of circumstances such as when they are used outside a behaviour support plan registered with the Commission or when they have not been authorised according to the state or territory process. The extent of the problem is unclear though. We cannot tell what proportion of unauthorised restrictive practice can be attributed to inappropriate conduct, unplanned response, behaviour support plan / practitioner waiting times or behaviour support funding in NDIS plans (or lack thereof).

There were 353 deaths reported but there is no information about whether these deaths were contributed or related to the conduct of an NDIS provider (or anyone else for that matter). To further muddy the waters, the report states that these figures include multiple reports of the same incident and that some reported incidents may not have impacted a participant so it is really difficult to gauge the significance of the data.

Illustrative Chart Reportable Incidents - NDIS Commission Annual Report 2018-2019

Auditing bodies

The NDIS Commission approved 11 certified auditing bodies and trained 281 individual auditors. There are now 14 auditing bodies registered on the Commission’s website.

 

Behaviour support

1526 behaviour support practitioners were considered provisionally suitable to undertake behaviour support assessments and develop behaviour support plans that contain restrictive practices. The Commission stating it will commence assessing practitioner suitability against the Capability Framework in due course and a proposed Assessment Resource Toolkit for the framework is currently under development.

At 30 June 2019, more than 1150 behaviour support plans had been lodged with the NDIS Commission. The types of restrictive practices used was not reported on due to limitations in ICT capabilities, the Commission stating that it will be able to report on this by the next Annual Report.

Worker screening

The NDIS Worker Orientation Module that launched in May was completed by 22,850 individuals. The Commission worked with states and territories to prepare for the implementation of the national worker screening arrangements and a new national worker screening database to be hosted by the Commission was developed. When it will be launched remains to be seen. 

There is no doubt about it, they have had a busy foundational year. Don’t take my word for it though, you can read all the deets on the Commission’s website including the role of the NDIS Commission, the Executive team, performance report, management and accountability and of course the financials! 

Authors

Jessica Quilty

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