Mythbusters - Myth 8
There is legislation that the NDIA must use to determine who is eligible for SDA funding. The legislation uses words like ‘extreme functional impairment’ and ‘very high support needs’ in relation to eligibility. ‘Very high support needs’ is not necessarily the same as needing 24/7 1:1 support.
Having very high support needs might mean you need support often throughout the day and/or that you need support closely available at all times. Close support might not mean someone in the same room, it might mean someone in the same building, or in a property next door (for example).
Having very high support needs could be support for remembering what you need to do on a day to day basis, physical support to undertake tasks, or it might mean support to keep you or others safe. This support could be provided to you by a support worker or your family or friends. The NDIA has never defined how many support hours a person with very high support needs requires per day.
Jack has 5 hours of ‘planned’ support needs per day. For Jack, this means that at 8 am - 10am every morning, he is supported with his morning routine. He is also supported at 5pm - 8pm every day with his evening routine.
Jack also has unpredictable support needs, and needs someone close by at all times so that he can call for assistance when he needs it. Jack’s unpredictable support needs are for things like exiting the building, using the toilet, and taking off or putting on clothes. On average, Jack calls for assistance 5 times per day.
Although Jack has low ‘planned’ support needs (5 hours per day), his unpredictable support needs mean that he needs support closely available to him 24/7. Due to this, it is likely that Jack will be deemed to have very high support needs.
Murray lives in a Supported Residential Service (SRS) house and is provided with support for his personal care and domestic tasks. There is someone always in the house for Murray to call if he needs assistance.
Murray goes into the community a couple of times per week to do some shopping and catch up with his friends. He does this independently.
Even though Murray doesn’t require 24/7 support, given that Murray requires support in his home for the majority of the day, it is likely that Murray will be deemed to have very high support needs.
Daniel is independent in most aspects of his life. He has a support worker assist him for 2 hours, 3 times per week for shopping and assistance to appointments. This level of support is meeting Daniel’s needs.
It is unlikely that Daniel will be deemed to have very high support needs.
Contact our NDIS Housing Advice Line on 1300 61 64 63 from Monday-Friday, 10am-3pm (AEDT).