- There are government-funded services available to support people with disabilities.
- The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) provides funding support to Australians who meet certain criteria.
- People who are eligible to receive supports through the NDIS are called participants.
What is the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)?
If you are living with disability, there are government-funded services available to provide support.
The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) support Australians who:
- are aged between 9 and 65 years of age
- have a life-long, permanent or significant disability
The scheme is run by the Australian Government's National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA).
The NDIS is jointly funded and governed by the Australian Government and the states and territories.
Who is eligible for the NDIS?
To access support through the NDIS, you will need to:
- live in Australia
- be a citizen or have Australian residency
- be aged between 9 years and 65 years
- have a disability caused by a permanent impairment
- need some supports now to manage your daily activities
The NDIS early childhood approach is how the government supports children younger than 9 years and their families. It helps you access the right support if you have:
- children younger than 6 years with developmental delay or concerns about their development
- children younger than 9 years with disability
The early childhood approach can help you:
- find out about supports that may help your child
- access the support you need
- increase your child's ability to do activities they need or want to do
- increase your child's inclusion and participation in mainstream and community settings, like childcare or recreational activities
- get referrals to support services like parent support groups
What support is funded by the NDIS?
The NDIS can help to support your access to disability services and allied healthcare.
Some of the supports funded by the NDIS may include:
- daily life activities
- transport to take part in community, social, economic and daily life activities
- workplace help
- help with household tasks
- home modifications
- mobility equipment
The support you can get will depend on your needs.
You can read more about the types of supports funded.
How do I plan my NDIS funded support?
People who meet the NDIS requirements are called 'participants'. Every participant will get help to create an NDIS plan. Everyone's plan is different.
Carers and family members can also help with the NDIS planning process.
Every NDIS participant has an individual plan. This is developed based on lots of things, like:
- where you live
- who supports you now
- your goals
Your goals may be big or small. Goals might be:
- getting a job
- learning new skills
- meeting new people
The NDIS may provide some funding to achieve these goals.
How do I use my NDIS plan?
Once your NDIS plan is approved, the NDIS may arrange to meet with you. This is called an implementation meeting. It will happen within 4 weeks of your plan being approved.
At the meeting you will talk about how to use your plan.
You can decide to:
- control your own NDIS funds
- choose someone else to manage your plan
Read more about controlling your own funding. This gives you the chance to decide what supports you buy.
Where is the NDIS available?
The NDIS is available across Australia. Visit the NDIS website for details about the NDIS in your state or territory.
To find out how to access the NDIS:
What support is available for people who can't access the NDIS?
People who are not eligible for the NDIS can still get help to access community and other government services.
If you're aged 65 years or older, disability support is given through My Aged Care.
Resources and support
If English is not your first language, you can call the Translating and Interpreting Service on 131 450.
You can visit the National Disability Gateway if you need help finding and getting disability services across Australia. You can call the Disability Gateway on 1800 643 787.
Carers Australia has information on disability and the NDIS and has member organisations in each state and territory. You can call the Carer Gateway on 1800 422 737.
State and territory resources and support
- Australian Capital Territory — the ACT Government Community Services has information on disability services.
- New South Wales — find disability support services for help with housing, transport, sport and recreation.
- Northern Territory — disability services and advocacy services can be found through the NT government.
- Queensland — People with disability living in Queensland can find information on support and the NDIS through the Queensland Government.
- South Australia — the SA government has information on disability support.
- Tasmania — the Tasmanian Government has Disability Services and programs.
- Victoria — NDIS and disability services and support in Victoria has information for people with disability.
- Western Australia — the Government of Western Australia has disability support services for people with a disability, their families and carers.
You can also call the healthdirect helpline on 1800 022 222 (known as NURSE-ON-CALL in Victoria). A registered nurse is available to speak with 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Learn more here about the development and quality assurance of healthdirect content.
Last reviewed: October 2023