8 March 2017
Signs of Good Support Coordination – By Interchange Australia Coordinator, Rebecca Lackenby
The NDIS is now in full swing and for many, the changes have been overwhelming. Implementing a plan means signing service agreements with providers, ensuring that the costings are correct as per the NDIS price guide and linking into services as per the goals in a participant’s plan. Fortunately, there is a support category under the NDIS that accommodates for someone to assist with detangling the NDIS maze; Coordination of Supports. Coordination of supports is assistance to strengthen a participant’s abilities to coordinate supports and participate in the community. This can include resolving points of crisis and developing capacity and resilience in a participants formal and informal support networks. There are also different levels of support coordination depending on the participant’s needs.
But what exactly is support coordination and how do you know if your NDIS money is being spent wisely? Interchange Australia had been providing case management for over 10 years which has many similarities to coordination of supports.
Here are some things to look for in a good support coordinator:
They know your plan
A good support coordinator knows the NDIS price guide inside and out and can explain to you what part of your plan comes out of what part of the price guide and what services you can access from this.
They look at your whole of life
The whole ethos of the NDIS is to have strengthened integration for people with a disability into funded and mainstream services. A good support coordinator will look at your needs not only in terms of service but physical environment, need and wants, what you like and don’t like and address all of these in the context of your plan.
They seek out connections, make connections and maintain connections
A good support coordinator does not want you to be dependent on them long term. Coordination of supports is successful when it seeks out appropriate services for clients, helps to facilitate engagement with these supports and then tracks how this connection is going with the aim to eventually step back and let that connection grow.
They account for their time
Outcomes, outcomes, outcomes! Your support coordinator charges your NDIS plan for their time so make sure you are seeing some results.
They can translate the old system into the new
This is especially relevant for this initial roll-out time for the NDIS in our area. Many participants have been receiving services for a long time and are used to the jargon and parameters of the old system. The NDIS in many ways is a whole new ball game, but the goals of service and the needs of the participant are the same so some translation of the old system into the new needs to take place to reduce knowledge gaps and ensure the participants plans are fully utilised.
They problem solve with you
A good support coordinator should work with you to review challenges and encourage you to look for solutions. They may do some of the leg work but they are not there to take control and override your plan.
They have good local connections
This includes both funded and mainstream services.
If they don’t know, they find out
The NDIS is not only new for the participant, it is new for many providers as well. A good support coordinator will find out the answers for you to help navigate the maze.
They make life easier!
If you would like some more information on coordination of supports, please do not hesitate to contact one of our experienced Consultants on 1300 112 334..