February 2019 Newsletter
Friday 8th February marked a significant day in the Specialist Disability Accommodation Sector with the release of news related to the outcome of the SDA Framework Review by the Disability Reform Council (DRC). The DRC endorsed the original SDA framework (2016) which was required to be reviewed on or at its 3rd year of operation. The overall goal was to achieve desired SDA outcomes by addressing the emerging concerns of NDIS participants seeking SDA, investors and providers. The NDIS also released a new price guide & some other important information.
Here is a snap-shot of the most relevant changes:
- Support Coordinators are no longer required to address other alternative housing options for NDIS participants seeking SDA funding in their housing plan.
- Determining SDA eligibility will be a more efficient process with a dedicated national team of senior staff to guide the planning and assessment processes and to provide greater assistance to participants in the process. Priority or fast tracking will be given to young people in aged care, those in hospital settings awaiting discharge and those with an offer of a SDA vacancy.
- Current SDA prices have been locked-in until 2023 providing solidarity, particularly to housing providers, giving confidence to introduce new and innovative modern projects.
- A NDIS SDA reference group will be established which is designed to provide a forum for SDA stakeholders to converse, collate and network with senior NDIS staff – providing a clear gateway and communication stream.
- New SDA will be able to be pre-registered with the NDIA allowing participants to have greater visibility of the SDA properties that may become available in their desired location.
- A requirement for the NDIA to provide quarterly updates on SDA data, including the number of participants with SDA and the number of SDA dwellings by location.
- SDA funding to be provided in a NDIS plan even if a property is not available. This will allow eligible SDA participants to use their funding to explore their market options for a SDA dwelling that suits their needs.
- What is proposed and ideally operational by July 2019 is greater flexibility in the rules to allow:
- couples to share a bedroom where they choose to do so.
- children to share a room with their siblings.
Based on this update, 2019 promises to be a great year for all those involved in the SDA world! There is a large pool of information available dedicated to this overhaul – feel free to contact SDA Options if you have any questions.