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Who loses out in the NDIS? An analysis of the early rollout of the National Disability Insurance Scheme in Australia.

Backhouse, Stephanie (2017) Who loses out in the NDIS? An analysis of the early rollout of the National Disability Insurance Scheme in Australia. Masters by Coursework thesis, Murdoch University.

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The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is heralded as the second biggest social reform since Medicare and is currently being rolled out across Australia. The NDIS individualised funding model promises a transformational change in service delivery for people with disability and claims to deliver increased autonomy to assist Australians with disability to achieve their goals and enjoy an ordinary life. This thesis is a timely analysis of the early rollout of the NDIS. A consideration of the disability service delivery and policy which precipitated the NDIS in Australia places this policy reform in context. Comparisons are drawn with the implementation of the current social care model in the United Kingdom. Particular reference is made to the work of Dr Simon Duffy, an advocate for individualised budgets and self directed supports and key critic of the present interpretation of the personalisation agenda in the UK.

Evaluations of the current NDIS model indicate significant opportunities for people with disability to build on existing social and financial capital. This thesis also explores the constraints which impact on these opportunities. I suggest that the original intent of the ‘Every Australian Counts’ campaign (a citizen led movement of disability activists and supporters lobbying for substantive equality through the implementation of the NDIS) is compromised by a political discourse of privatisation and marketisation. Structural barriers which continue to hinder full actualisation of citizenship rights are not adequately addressed in an individualised funding model with a focus on service delivery. Some groups of people with disability may be left behind in a user led system.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters by Coursework)
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Arts
Supervisor(s): Palmer, David
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