The National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) has launched a trial of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) website for community feedback.
The test version has been developed following extensive consultation and testing with participants, families, carers, providers and representatives from the disability sector.
Aiming to improve user experience the new website features a simplified structure, a new adaptable design for easier access on mobile devices, improved search functionality, new inbuilt accessibility features including contrast and font resizing and a clearer layout of information explaining key NDIS information and processes.
The NDIA will field feedback from the community over a six week period before it is permanently replaced in 2019.
“The release of the test version of the NDIS website today is expected to lead to a better experience for people online, with a more accessible and easier to navigate site,” Minister for Social Services Paul Fletcher says.
Assistant Minister for Social Services Sarah Henderson says the Government is working hard to improve the experience of NDIS participants, their families and carers and providers and is encouraging website users to provide feedback by emailing [email protected].
“I encourage people with disability, their families, carers and NDIS providers to take the opportunity to provide feedback on the site during the trial period to ensure we are meeting your needs.”
Senior Advocate of Communication Rights Australia, Monique Sweetland shares some issues she has found with the new test website.
“On the “preparing for your planning meeting” page, it may be confusing as it talks about LACs and support coordinators – however people don’t know if they will be funded to have a support coordinator until once their plan is approved.”
In the ‘mobility allowance’ section, Ms Sweetland says it implies that people will receive the same amount under NDIS as what their mobility allowance has covered in the past.
“However, this is not the experience of a number of our clients.”
“There is a section titled “how to review a planning decision” as well as another one titled “reviewing your plan and goals” – this is potentially confusing and could be worded more clearly to distinguish between routine plan reviews (which occur automatically every 12 months) and your right to request a review as soon as you receive your plan if you are not happy with your plan,” she says.
Developed with consumers in mind and to help them make informed choices about disability support options, the website and State and Territory based print publications have been welcomed by both consumers and service providers.
The resources have been applauded by many for the valuable, easy to understand information and consumer stories included and the extensive user-friendly directory detailing providers and their services.
To find out more or to order a copy of the Guide visit DisabilitySupportGuide.com.au or call 1300 186 688.
*Beta testing has now finished – click here to visit the NDIS website.