Navigating Assistive Technology within the NDIS

What is Assistive Technology (AT)? NDIS Australia explains assistive technologies (AT) as “… the physical support of something that assists you in […]


What is Assistive Technology (AT)?

NDIS Australia explains assistive technologies (AT) as “… the physical support of something that assists you in doing a task safely or doing something you otherwise cannot do because of your disability”.

A couple of examples of AT the NDIS have described are:

  • An app to help you speak to another person if you have a speech impairment,

  • Non-slip mats that can help you move around your home safely,

  • Special forks that assist you to eat, OR

  • Higher risk assistive technological items, such as wheelchairs and adjustable beds.

The NDIS has also outlined that AT may be included within your NDIS plan if it meets:

  • The reasonable and necessary criteria,

  • Your specific needs, OR

  • It helps you to pursue your NDIS goals.

The NDIS notes that they cannot “fund AT items that are more appropriately funded by other government services”.  

Is my child eligible for Assistive Technology?

In searching for the best AT for your kid, there are a couple of essential factors to remember. The NDIS AT “risk levels” range from simple/ low to complex/ higher.

The simple/ low AT products are either unlikely to cause harm in day-to-day life, available for trial/ purchasing in retail stores, or does not require a professional to use or set up safely.

The complex/ higher products are items such as a powered wheelchair, have grounds to believe it will cause harm, or require professional advice to set up or use safely. To evaluate the complexity of your kids AT needs, or for a further explanation of different risk levels.

How can Upside Kids Physio help you navigate this?

Upside Kids Physio are AT assessors that can support you with equipment recommendations, trials, reports and fit sessions. As simple as this sounds, there is always the lingering question – how can I fund equipment to help support my kid?

The NDIS categorises assistive technology funding as low, mid and high cost.

  • Low cost (and low risk) items – these come from your core budget, meaning they’re under $1,500 per item

  • Mid cost items are between $1,5000 – $5,000 per item, a report is required to accompany these items to your NDIS coordinator or by uploading to your portal, you should budget up to 4 hours in your capacity building funding for your therapist to complete this report.

  • High-cost items are over $5,000 per item. If you require this type of equipment, your therapist is required to complete an assistive technology application which can take up to 6 hours per item to complete. This can include the AT assessment, trial and application writing as well as the time required for set up and reassessment.

Note: Capital budget supports the more expensive technologies of AT such as equipment, home or vehicle modifications. PLUS, funding for one-off purchases, such as a wheelchair.

Assistive Technology NDIS – Upside Kids Physio

Recommended providers for Assistive Technology NDIS

As we have and continue to help kids with various AT needs, we are up to date with the latest technologies, rental services, and the ins and outs of the processes to help get your child’s goals met.

A couple of the providers we recommend for paediatric equipment for children with special needs are:

·      Special Needs Solutions

·      Astris PME.

·      Advanced Mobility,

·      Aida Care,

·      Milestones, and

·      Korthotics.

For local Orthotic providers, we recommend:

·      In Motion Orthotics and

·      OAPL.

All the providers mentioned above, similarly to Upside Kids Physio, love to work with families and their children to meet their goals to boost the overall quality of life and ability to access and participate in the community.

Get in touch

As AT assessors, we commonly assist kids with orthotics (AFOs, SMOs, custom in-shoe orthotics), body orthoses, wheelchairs, power wheelchairs, beds, walkers, disability seating, and so much more for low to high-cost items.

To have a chat about your child’s options or to book in for an assessment, give us a bell on 0451 006 003. Our experienced physios can conduct assessments and evaluations for a child’s AT in your home, the child’s childcare centre, or at our clinic in Ashmore.

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