Western Australia (WA) has joined the nationally delivered National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) after reaching an agreement with the Commonwealth Government this week.
The decision ensures WA residents with a disability, as well as their families and carers, now have certainty of the future of the NDIS in the state.
WA’s Disability Services Minister Stephen Dawson says people with a disability in the state “need and deserve that certainty”.
“A state-operated NDIS simply could not match the capacity and resourcing that can be achieved by being part of a truly national scheme,” he says.
“I also believe that Western Australia would be better placed to influence the future direction of the NDIS as part of a national approach, rather than as an outsider.”
The agreement replaces the bilateral agreement signed in January earlier this year by the previous state government for a WA administered insurance scheme.
From 1 July 2018, the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) will assume responsibility for the delivery of the NDIS in the state.
Minister Dawson believes the previous solo approach can still present some benefits going forward.
“We will share the learnings gained from our local approach to support the continuous improvement of the NDIS into the future, for the benefit of all Australians,” he says.
People already taking part in the ‘WA NDIS’ will transfer to the nationally delivered scheme in a phased approach commencing in April next year with it scheduled to end by December.
“We remain committed to our sector in WA and will continue to stand alongside them during this once in a lifetime reform,” Minister Dawson says.
The NDIS will continue to roll out on a geographic basis and is expected to be fully rolled out across WA by 2020.