When choosing to self-manage, you will receive funding from the NDIA so that you can select and pay for the services that will help you to meet your goals. This is core component of the NDIS which believes that you need to have choice and control when it comes to decisions being made regarding your care.
You are not limited to using only NDIS registered providers and can use mainstream or disability providers of any kind. This means that you have access to wider range of services and service providers.
You are also not tied to the NDIS Price Guide and can pay a provider whatever you like or whatever they demand. You also can negotiate prices.
If you want to do this, you will need to open a separate bank account that is only used for your NDIS funds. The name of the bank account must be in the participant’s name.
You will then be able to:
- Choose and organise your own providers
- Book your own services and set up service agreements with all your providers
- Pay your service providers. You will need to pay providers after their service and then claim the invoice on the NDIS portal. You should receive the funds back within 2 days. If you have a good relationship with your provider, you will be able to wait for the funds before you pay them. Some providers require payment on the spot and so you may be out of pocket until re-imbursed.
- Manage your total plan budget. Be aware of how much you have spent and how much you have left.
- Keep records of purchase invoices and receipts for all your purchases.
- Link the supports you purchase to the goals in your NDIS plan. You will need to be able to answer the question of ‘Is this a disability-related expense? I.e. would I buy it if I did not have a disability. Does it cover the ‘reasonable and necessary’ requirements of the NDIA.?
Choosing agency managed means that the NDIA directly manages the participants funding.
If someone chooses to be Agency managed, they are required to only use registered providers. This restricts the number of providers that can provide supports, and in some instances, it can take away Choice and Control from the participant.
When managed by the NDIA, providers invoice directly through their provider portal.
Every participant has the right to a Plan Manager should they choose to be Plan Managed. The funds for a Plan Manager are specific and do not take away from any other area of funding in your plan. The NDIS will pay your Plan Manager, who will directly pay for all supports you have asked them to manage.
Choosing Plan Management offers some of the same advantages as Self-Management, like self-managing, you are not limited to using only NDIS registered providers
Your Plan Manager will:
- Pay all your bills – you can send them to your Plan Manager when you receive them, or service providers can send the bills directly to the Plan Manager for payment
- Send you monthly statements to help you track your plan spending
- Reimburse you for anything you need to pay upfront
- Some Plan Managers will help you with establishing service agreements with providers.
Advantages of Plan Managing:
- Not restricted to only NDIS registered providers so can use existing providers. This gives you flexibility to hire whoever you want
- No need to worry about paying providers, your Plan Manager does that for you
- No need to keep receipts and invoices in case of audit
- A great Plan Manager will help you get the best value from your allocated NDIS funds and will make sure that you don’t run out of funds unexpectedly
- You don’t need to use the NDIS Portal
- Using a Plan Manager is a great steppingstone to learning to self-manage.
Disadvantages of Plan Managing
In summary, the key differences between Self-Management and Plan Management are:
You don’t have to choose one option for the whole plan (for example you may want to agency manage your core funding so that you can use agency support workers, but you may want to self-manage your capacity building budget so that you can choose therapists who may not be registered providers). Alternatively, there are some services that can only be Agency managed like behavioural supports.
Either way, this is an informed decision that you need to make and the team at Trusted Care are here to help you discuss and to review your options, to speak with a Trusted Care team member today phone 1800 670 990 or email firstname.lastname@example.org