That time of year is here again! The NDIA have released the new Price Guides, which will come into effect as of next Sunday, 1 July.
This Price Guide update is much more significant than last year's as it comes hot off the heels of the McKinsey Independent Pricing Review. We've known since March/April that the NDIA intended to endorse a huge number of the recommendations but it wasn't until now that we knew to what extent.
So here they are - the key changes of this hotly anticipated update:
7.6% price increase for standard intensity attendant care (i.e. with daily personal activities and assistance with community participation). This is a combination of:
A new 2.5% Temporary Support Overhead (TSO) loading, intended to support providers with their overhead costs during the transition period. This is just for 2018/19 and will drop down to 1.25% next financial year.
5.14% increase in prices to take into account increases in the SCHCADS (3.50%) Award and the Equal Remuneration Order (2.27%).
5.14% price increase for high intensity attendant care as the TSO does not apply.
2.1% increase for capacity building support based on national Wage Price Index. This is in line with last years’ increase though unlike last year, this price increase also applies to therapists.
$2 per hour increase for centre-based group supports to support providers meeting increased costs associated with delivering care in a facility.
New ratios: The NDIA have filled some gaps in the Price Guide with the introduction of price limits for new ratios:
1:3 ratios in Short Term Accommodation
1:4 and 1:5 ratios in both standard and high intensive community-based group supports
Community Engagement Assistance ($42.59): A brand new item: “Program to empower participants and improve interactions between participants and their social networks. Assistance to engage effectively in the community through a group approach to help achieve goals, gain insight into their lives and make informed decisions.”
TRAVEL & CANCELLATIONS
45 minutes travel for rural therapists: Therapists may now charge up to 45 minutes of travel time in rural areas (MMM4 or MMM5 area) against the appointment they are travelling to. Outside of rural areas, this limit is 20 minutes. The Agency has also clarified that therapy providers can also claim for return travel from the final appointment in a day
Clarifying participants’ paying for cost of own travel: The Price Guide also provides what will be a welcome clarification for many providers: providers can negotiate with participants to pay for the cost of their transport in addition to the support worker’s time.
Greater scope for cancellations: providers can now charge up to 90% of the service booking price for short notice cancellations (i.e. after 3pm the day before) up to a maximum of 12 per year for Core supports (up from 8) and 6 per hours per year for therapy (up from 4).
Expansion on Support Coordination roles: The Price Guide includes the most extensive descriptions of the three types of Support Coordination that we have seen to date.
Easy to read Core supports tables: The layout of attendant care prices have also been helpfully updated so it is now set out as a matrix where all the relevant times and ratios are on one sheet.
As is standard practice, participants’ plans will be automatically adjusted to account for the increase in prices. They will not, however, be adjusted to allow for further travel or cancellations.
There is still no news on changes to prices of therapy supports or additional complexity loadings as we await the outcomes of the next McKinsey report.
2018/19 NDIS Price Guide: What's changed?
Webinar: 27 June & 5 July (repeat)