Gillard Makes NDIS a Priority After Leadership Victory
Tuesday, 28th February 2012 at 10:21 am
Prime Minister Julia Gillard pledged yesterday to make the
NDIS a priority
Prime Minister Julia Gillard has pledged to make the National Disability Insurance Scheme, NDIS, a priority following her resounding leadership victory in Canberra yesterday.
After the 71 to 31 vote win against Kevin Rudd, Gillard told the media that putting the framework in place for a National Disability Insurance Scheme as one of her main goals.
"As we build great new vehicles of fairness, like a National Disability Insurance Scheme, I'm impatient to get on with that work," Gillard said. "I will be getting on with that work today. We haven't got a day to lose."
However, the Prime Minister conceded that while she is very committed to building a National Disability Insurance Scheme she said she is not underestimating the complexity of the funding arrangements around the scheme.
In August 2011 the Gillard Government announced that it would start work immediately with State and Territory Governments on measures that will build the foundations for a National Disability Insurance Scheme, following the release of the Productivity Commission's final report into the matter.
The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) will provide insurance cover for all Australians in the event that they, or a family member, acquire a disability.
The scheme will provide individually tailored care and support to around 410,000 people with significant disabilities.
The report recommended that funding for the scheme – projected to cost around $6.3 billion per year – be a core function of government, just like Medicare.
A separate no-fault insurance scheme was recommended for people requiring lifetime care and support for catastrophic injuries, such as major brain or spinal cord injuries.
The major report found that the current disability support system in Australia is underfunded, unfair, fragment and inefficient, and that most people in Australia cannot adequately prepare for the financial impacts of significant disability.
The report says the costs of lifetime care can be so substantial that the risks and costs involved need to be pooled.
It says the NDIS would fund long-term care and support for people with significant disabilities – but not income replacement. The report says the benefits of the NDIS would significantly outweigh the costs.
The Productivity Commission has proposed a 7-year timeline for the full implementation of the Scheme.