Assistive Technology Changes – NDIS

On the 1 March the NDIS released a new policy for mid-range AT (read the media release).

In short, some key changes are that participants are no longer expected to gain quotes for technology up to $15,000, and providers are no longer expected to fill in the AT report template. More information is available online.

Although these changes are broadly positive, Speech Pathology Australia is working with other peak groups such as ARATA, NATA and AHPA to understand how the changes to AT advisors, AT assessors, indemnity claims, consumer law and increasing capacity building funds for training fit into the new Guidelines.

Speech pathologists will still need to write a letter of support for high risk (electronic) items, which documents their clinical decision making . In addition, low risk items such as paper based communication devices can be prescribed by other health professionals, so is a focus of consultation for peak bodies around scope of practice.

Members will be pleased to see that IPADs are now acknowledged as being funded for communication devices. The Association is very pleased this feedback has been taken on board and will be advocating for some terminology changes to the Guidelines.

In addition, the Agency has also made the following webpage available for urgent AT repairs, so members who are currently affected by natural disasters may need to use this.

Members can expect that professional education will be updated to reflect the new changes, but for now please email any enquiries to the Association.