The launch of DisabilityCare Australia, the national disability insurance scheme, is just around the corner, and a lot of hard work is going into ensuring that everything is ready for 1 July.
Last week the Prime Minister and Victorian Premier announced Geelong as the location of the head office of DisabilityCare Australia. This is great news for Geelong and another step towards the full rollout of the scheme by 2019.
Once DisabilityCare Australia is fully rolled out, it will support around 460,000 people with significant and permanent disability. It is being rolled out gradually over the next few years because it’s a big change to the current system and the Government needs to make sure everyone is properly supported to make the transition into the scheme.
The launch of DisabilityCare in selected sites across the country will allow the Government to evaluate the operation of the scheme throughout the implementation process, and learn from it so they can make improvements before the full roll out.
The Government is establishing a separate division of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) to conduct independent reviews of decisions made by DisabilityCare Australia. This will make sure that people who request an independent review will be seen by AAT members experienced in considering DisabilityCare decisions and working with people with disability.
Some people seeking an AAT review may want support while going through the review process. The Government has also provided $860,000 in 2013-14 to support people through the AAT external review process.
They will also fund specific National Disability Advocacy Program providers in launch sites to provide support persons to assist applicants seeking an AAT review of DisabilityCare Australia decisions.
Jenny Macklin and Amanda Rishworth explained that the Government is completely reforming the system, and they want to build a scheme that stands the test of time.