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Updates for Residential Aged Care

Since last week's article, we've got new key dates and updates for Residential Aged Care providers.

By Jessica Quilty

Updated 15 Apr 202417 Nov 2020

We recently wrote about the new requirements for Residential Aged Care (RAC) providers that support NDIS participants to become registered from 1 December 2020. Since that article, the Commission has confirmed the National Disability Insurance Scheme Legislation Amendment (Transitioning Aged Care Providers) Rule 2020 (the Transition Rule) is currently being considered by states and territories. The Transition Rule reflects the transitional arrangements that will be implemented when residential aged care providers move to regulation by the NDIS Commission. This is what is proposed.


Registration group

RAC providers with NDIS participants will be automatically registered as NDIS providers on 1 December 2020 under the registration group 0115 – Assistance with daily life tasks in a group or shared living arrangement.


NDIS worker screening

Originally, it was suggested that relevant RACs would need to comply with the interim worker screening arrangements from 1 December 2020—pretty awkward timing given a national check is set to launch on 1 February 2021.

The Commission has updated these transitional arrangements for RACs:

For the period from 1 December 2020 to 1 February 2021, it is anticipated that registered RAC providers will be required to ensure that workers (staff members and volunteers) in risk-assessed roles have an acceptable aged care provider check ('aged care check') in accordance with the requirements of the Accountability Principles 2014. These requirements under Part 6 of the Accountability Principles 2014 include a police check and, if necessary, a statutory declaration stating that the person has not been convicted of certain offences. These aged care checks will be recognised for three years from the date the clearance is given.

So, from 1 December dual providers will be able to satisfy their requirements if they have:

  • an acceptable aged care provider check; OR
  • an acceptable check in accordance with state and territory transitional arrangements; OR
  • an NDIS Worker Screening Check clearance (when it commences across Australia from 1 February 2021).


Behaviour Support

The anticipated transitional arrangements for behaviour support have now been announced. The Commission stating that these will help facilitate “orderly processes” for the NDIA to add funding for behaviour support to NDIS participant plans to facilitate the development of behaviour support plans and seek authorisation.

Anticipated Dates

By 1 January 2021: RACs will need to notify the NDIS Commission on the use of a regulated restrictive practice for an NDIS participant.

Where no positive behaviour support plan exists for the NDIS participant:

By 1 March 2021: RACs will need to take all reasonable steps to obtain an interim behaviour support plan and obtain authorisation for the use of the regulated restrictive practice from state and territory bodies.

By 1 June 2021: RACs will need to take all reasonable steps to obtain a comprehensive behaviour support plan and obtain authorisation for the use of the regulated restrictive practice from state and territory bodies.

1 December 2021: Comprehensive positive behaviour support plans for NDIS participants who need one will need to be in place by this date.

Any restrictive practice not authorised (however described by the state/territory) and not in accordance with a behaviour support plan is an unauthorised restrictive practice and needs to be reported to the NDIS Commission as a reportable incident within five days.

RACs can find out more about reportable incidents on the NDIS Commission’s website. There are also a number of quick reference guides to help navigate the portal.



ACSA has now uploaded some FAQs from RACs in relation to behaviour support, reportable incidents and general enquiries. 


Still to come

Work is underway to identify alignment between the NDIS Practice Standards and the Aged Care Quality Standards. This will inform arrangements for auditing against the NDIS Practice Standards that minimise the regulatory burden without reducing safeguards for NDIS participants. Guidance material is also said to be under development to assist RAC providers in preparing for and undertaking an NDIS audit.


Jessica Quilty

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