A support coordinator is a funded support person under the NDIS who can help you to implement your NDIS plan and connect with the services you need. Support coordinators work with NDIS participants to organise when, where and how services are provided.
This article explains how support coordination works and how to ensure support coordination is maximising your NDIS plan. It also covers the responsibilities and characteristics of a good support coordinator.
National Disability Insurance Scheme explained
The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is a government-funded scheme in Australia that provides support and services to people with disabilities, their families, and carers.
The NDIS helps people with disabilities participate in community life and achieve their goals by providing them with the necessary care.
What is NDIS funding used for?
Under the NDIS, people with disabilities receive funding based on their individual needs. This funding is used to access a range of services and supports, including assistive technology, personal care, therapy, and community participation.
Principles of the NDIS
The NDIS is based on the principles of choice and control. Participants are empowered to choose the best supports and services for them and have more control over how their funding is used.
The NDIS is administered by the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA), which is responsible for managing the scheme, assessing eligibility, and providing funding.
Once you have been assessed and confirmed to be eligible for the NDIS, you will work to create your personal NDIS service plan. You can have a say in the development of your individual plan. The plan outlines the supports and services that are reasonable and necessary for your well being and will help you achieve your goals and live an independent life.
NDIS plan administration
Depending on the nature of your disability, your service plan may be simple or detailed. The support plan outlines the services you require and the relevant services that will provide them for you. If your plan is complex, you may require some help arranging and managing these services.
Understanding your NDIS plan
Because there are so many service providers and service standards, navigating the NDIS can be difficult. That’s where a support coordinator comes in!
Your coordinator can help you understand your NDIS plan. They will ensure you are getting the right support, and that your NDIS providers are delivering services that meet your needs. NDIS support coordinators will maintain relationships with providers and other government services. They will ensure you are not working with unregistered providers and help you spend your allocated funds to mazimise your entitlements.
What is a support coordinator?
A support coordinator is a person who works within the NDIS system. Support coordinators work closely with NDIS participants, to help them arrange and receive the services and supports they require. They help ensure the effective coordination of the NDIS plan.
What do support coordinators do?
Support coordinators are responsible for coordinating the different supports and services identified in the participant’s NDIS plan. A person may have many different providers assisting them with different activities and tasks. This includes any services and supports that are provided by family and friends.
The coordinator can contact providers and carers, making times for services to be delivered. They can book in services, create agreements with providers and cancel or change services on the plan.
Support coordination services
The exact tasks your coordinator carries out will vary over time. Depending on your requirements, your support coordinator may:
help you understand your NDIS plan
arrange services that you need
work collaboratively with you to get you the best outcomes
provide guidance about the use of NDIS funding
review available resources in the local community
connect you with potential providers
work towards capacity building
help you handle unexpected events of changes
create a service agreement with providers to ensure quality care
ensure payments are made to providers
help you resolve issues with your providers
Planning and coordinating supports
The planning and coordination of support takes time and effort. One way you can get good outcomes from your plan is to have some help in arranging, booking and paying for services. A service coordinator can help you ensure you are using your NDIS funding for the best.
Your plan will be regularly reviewed, but outside of the review times, you may need to make a change to your plan. In these cases, your coordinator can help you make the necessary alterations.
Benefits of support coordination
Your support coordinator will be able to assist you in making these changes and ensure you are getting the right support when you need it. The benefits you will see with a support coordinator include:
saving time and effort liaising with service provers
reducing worry or stress about how to change or update your plan
feeling supported to make decisions
empowering you to feel in charge of your NDIS supports
helping you learn about how the system works so you can work towards self management
Capacity building and support coordination
Care coordinators can also work with an NDIS participant to build their capacity to manage their own supports over time. This involves providing information about how the NDIS system works and explaining how payments for services are processed.
It may involve taking a participant to meet potential service providers, or preparing for a service review. Support connection also involves providing support should you wish to cancel or change service providers.
A support coordinator can help you resolve issues or complaints with providers, and feel more confident about being an NDIS participant.
Local area coordinator vs support coordinator
A local area coordinator (LAC) and a support coordinator are both roles within the NDIS. However, they have different responsibilities and functions. A LAC is mainly responsible for providing you with information and helping you gain access the NDIS. A support coordinator is responsible for coordinating your various supports and services once an NDIS plan has been created.
Do I need an LAC or a support coordinator?
An LAC is responsible for providing information and support to people with disabilities and their families to help them understand and access the NDIS. They help in developing a plan and connect people to the right services and supports available in their local area.
A support coordinator works with people who have more complex needs, helping them to implement their plan and coordinate different supports and services. They also help people to navigate the NDIS and resolve any issues that may arise. They maintain an ongoing relationship with participants.
Support coordination vs specialist support coordination
There are two types of support coordination within the NDIS: support coordination and specialist support coordination. Both of these services can be funded through the NDIS. There are similarities between them in that they are both intended to help a person arrange the services that they are entitled to within their NDIS plan.
What type of service coordination do I need?
Support coordination is a funded support that helps people with disabilities to implement their plan and connect with the supports and services they need. The support coordinator works with the participant to identify their goals, develop a plan to achieve those goals, and connect them with the right providers and services.
Specialist support coordination is a higher level of support that is designed for people with more complex support needs.
Who is specialist support coordination for?
Specialist support coordination is usually provided to those who have multiple disabilities, require support from multiple service providers, or have challenging behaviors. Participants who face complex barriers often need a higher level of service planning and delivery.
Specialist coordination involves more intensive support and coordination to help participants to address specific challenges and achieve their goals. Specialist support coordinators are heavily involved in the monitoring and review of care for their clients.
Advocacy and advice
Support coordinators can also assist participants by providing advice about service options and costs. This can include helping you make informed decisions about what best and which other services might work well for you.
A support coordinator can also interact with agencies, providers and the NDIS as an advocate. This means that, with a participant’s agreement, they will speak on behalf of the participants. This is done to get the best and most appropriate outcome for the participant.
How to find an NDIS support coordinator
Finding a good NDIS support coordinator can take time; you want to find someone you can communicate with in an open and honest way. Your support coordinator will help you make the most of your NDIS funding.
One way to find the right NDIS support coordinator is to search the internet for quality support coordinators. You can also ask friends and family for advice and referrals.
Nursed Care for coordination of supports
Nursed Care is a fully NDIS-accredited community service provider based in Paramatta. We provide care to people living in the community right around metropolitan New South Wales.
We provide support coordination services as well as a range of other NDIS services, including:
community and social participation activities
supported living and accommodation
It makes sense to use Nursed Care for service coordination and delivery. Your Nursed Care support coordinator will be there to ensure you are receiving the best and necessary support with your NDIS funds. Contact us today!
NDIS Support coordination with Nursed Care
At Nursed Care, we are passionate about helping people effectively participate in the NDIS. We take the time to get to know you and understand your preferences and goals. We will take an active part in your service provision.
Your Nursed Care support coordinator will be able to support connection within the community, and maintain great relationships with the people who are important in your life. They will bring strong communication skills, to help you keep your funded supports in order. They will maximise the home benefits of your plan.
The NDIS set prices for each NDIS approved activity, outlined in the NDIS pricing guide. Support coordination is currently priced at around $100 per hour in metropolitan areas.
To become an NDIS support coordinator, a person needs to have a relevant qualification or experience in disability, mental health, or allied health. Some care coordinators may have several languages and can provide culturally appropriate care.
A specialist support coordinator may have a degree in social work, psychology, nursing, or a related field. A specialist support coordinator will help a person to address the complex barriers they face.
Psychosocial recover support is another NDIS service type considered as part of the support coordination group of services. This service can be accessed during times of acute mental illness.
To provide psychosocial recovery support, a coach is requires lived and/or learnt experience. Recovery coaches must have tertiary qualifications in peer work or mental health (minimum of Certificate IV in Mental Health Peer Work or Certificate IV in Mental Health) or equivalent training; and/or a minimum two years of experience in mental health-related work.
A good support coordinator will help you find the right supports to improve your life. They should be passionate about supporting people, empowering individuals and ensuring participants can lead fulfilling lives. A good NDIS support coordinator will usually take a holistic approach when it comes to how they consider your service plan.
Flexibility is another key skill for support coordinators- they need to be able to make necessary adjustments to service planning and delivery in light of a person’s evolving needs. Support coordinators will spring into action should unexpected events occur- such as an illness or a change to the level of support required. They will always work with your best interests at heart.