The flexible approach introduced during the pandemic allowed participants to spend up to $1,500 on low cost AT items, such as smart devices and fitness equipment, in consultation with their existing support providers.
While the COVID-19 pandemic continues, think how this flexible approach may help you to continue services safely if physical distancing is required. We recommend participants, their families and carers work with their existing providers to discuss the best way to receive services and supports or do everyday activities.
This may include:
Participants are able to spend up to $1500 on low cost AT items from their existing budgets. Participants should not spend more than $750 on electronic devices needed to maintain existing services.
Participants can use their existing NDIS funding to purchase an item if all of the following conditions are met:
Participants are advised that if a standard tablet computer or iPad is required to participate in online video classes, these should generally cost no more than $600.
Participants can use their funding flexibly to purchase low cost AT using funding in their Core – Consumables budget.
Plan-managed or self-managed participants can purchase these items from any provider.
NDIA-managed participants can purchase these from any NDIS provider registered to deliver the relevant AT supports.
We know not all participants have funding allocated in their Core budget for consumables. Following a change made in 2020, participants can use their Core budget more flexibly, including to purchase low cost AT under the consumables category.
Some participants only have funding in their Capacity Building budget, for example those who are part of the Early Childhood Early Intervention program. Participants are able to use the Low Cost AT – to support Capacity Building support delivery line item to purchase this low cost AT.
Participants should use their plan wisely for all of their support needs. The NDIA will not increase plan values to accommodate the purchase of a device under this policy.
For more information on the above items, refer to the coronavirus (COVID-19) – Using your budget FAQs for participants.
The following items and circumstances are excluded from the flexible low cost AT policy:
When we talk about low risk, we mean assistive technology that is:
Many assistive technology products are low risk, both to you and others. This includes things like non-slip mats, modified cutlery, walking sticks or handheld magnifiers.
If you ask us for low risk assistive technology, we’re required to decide if we’ll include this in your plan in 10 days.
We break the cost of assistive technology into 3 categories:
For some items it’s best to buy them. For other items, it might be better to rent or borrow them if your needs are likely to change.
Low cost items are:
The Core – Consumables section of your budget shows your low cost assistive technology funding.
For low cost assistive technology, we’re are required to decide if we’ll include this in your plan in 10 days.