There are five different categories – or types – of Specialist Disability Accommodation.
The first category is called ‘Basic’. It covers older SDA properties that don’t have any special design features. No more Basic SDA will be built or funded by the NDIS.
The next is called ‘Improved Liveability’ SDA. It is for people who find it difficult to see or understand things around them.
Improved Liveability SDA is easy to move around in. Doorways, handles and switches are easy to see, and it’s often easy to see from one room through to the next.
The third SDA category is called ‘Fully Accessible’. It is for people who have significant physical disability. Most often, people who are eligible for Fully Accessible SDA use a wheelchair to get around some or all of the time.
There are no steps in a Fully Accessible home. Doorways are wide enough for a wheelchair. The bathroom is designed to be used by people who are sitting as well as standing, and the kitchen often is too. Doors and blinds can be automated if they need to be.
The next category of SDA is called ‘High Physical Support’. It is generally for people who use an electric wheelchair to get around, and often a hoist to get in and out of bed.
A High Physical Support home has all the features of Fully Accessible SDA, plus emergency back up power, an intercom that’s connected to a close-by support worker, assistive tech that suits the needs of the person who lives there – such as voice- or remote-controlled doors, lights and heating – and provision for a ceiling hoist.
The fifth category of SDA is called ‘Robust’, which means ‘strong’. Robust SDA is for people who sometimes act in ways that may hurt them or the people around them.
The walls, windows and other things in a Robust home aren’t easily broken, and it has good sound-proofing – so sounds from outside don’t annoy the resident, and so that any noise the resident makes doesn’t annoy the neighbours. The doors and windows are secure.
A Robust home will also have a space where staff or other residents can go to keep themselves safe if they need to.
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