The NDIS does provide funding and support for people living with intellectual disabilities if they meet the eligibility and disability requirements.
The NDIS provides information and funding for support to eligible people with intellectual, physical, sensory, cognitive and psychosocial disability. Early intervention supports can also be provided for eligible people with disability or children with developmental delay.
There are around 4.3 million Australians who have a disability. As of 2018, 328,000 or 1.86% of Australians had an intellectual disability.
The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) provides eligible people with funding based on their personal needs, goals and aspirations.
Defining an intellectual disability
An intellectual disability is diagnosed before the age of 18 and can significantly affect the day-to-day functioning of a person.
The severity of a person’s intellectual skills – or intelligence – is often measured with an IQ test. A person’s social, conceptual and practical skills are also assessed to gage the severity of an intellectual disability.
Intellectual disability can be caused by a number of reasons including genetics, issues in pregnancy and birth, illness or other environmental factors.
How can an intellectual disability affect someone’s capacity to function in their day-to-day lives?
Someone living with an intellectual disability may find the following intellectual functioning and adaptive behaviours challenging, which can impact their day-to-day lives:
- Learning, problem-solving and reasoning
- Interpersonal skills
- Development of self-esteem
- Ability to follow rules
- Time management
- Language and literacy
- Ability to travel
- Occupational skills
- Attention to health
What are the most common intellectual disabilities?
The following conditions are common intellectual disabilities:
- Fragile X
- Down Syndrome
- Developmental Delay
- Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
- Prader–Willi Syndrome
Am I eligible for NDIS funding for an intellectual disability?
You may be eligible to access the NDIS for mental health conditions if you meet the following eligibility criteria:
- Have a disability that is permanent (it won’t go away)
- Have a disability that is significant (it affects day-to-day life)
- Must be under 65 years old
- Must live in Australia
- Be either a citizen, permanent resident or a holder of a Protected Special Category Visa
Your impairment/s must also meet all of the following requirements:
- Likely to be permanent
- Reduces functional capacity to undertake one or more of the following: communication; social interaction; learning; mobility; self-care; or self-management.
- Affects your capacity for social or economic participation
- Means you are likely to require support under the NDIS for your lifetime
Receiving NDIS funding for an intellectual disability
To receive funding through the NDIS for an intellectual disability or impairment, you must be assessed and diagnosed by a specialist and provide evidence that you meet the above eligibility and requirements.
You will need to complete an Access Request Form (ARF) or a Verbal Access Request (VAR) which checks your eligibility requirements for the NDIS and the includes evidence and assessment from a healthcare professional.
Are there other avenues to receive government help if I am not eligible?
If you are not eligible for NDIS support, other avenues of support are available. Read more about the available support for those that don’t meet NDIS disability requirements.
Need help navigating your NDIS plan?
Our friendly, knowledgeable team can help. If you’ve gone through these steps, been found to be eligible, and now have an NDIS plan, we can provide you support with NDIS Plan Management.
Navigating the NDIS can be challenging and confusing for participants and their loved ones. Our goal is to keep everyone informed and connected, help our clients make the most of their plans, and keep our partners up-to-date. Give us a call to get started today.