To optimise success of the NDIS for Participants and service providers, a National Disability Insurance Scheme Quality and Safeguarding Framework (the Framework) has been established. The Framework is overseen by the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission. Safeguards under the Framework are designed to support Participants exercise choice and control. They aim to mitigate the risk of harm to Participants and ensure high quality supports are provided to them. Safeguards are established to help prevent harm. They are the measures we take to protect ourselves, the Participants, their families, our co-workers and even organisations to prevent something undesirable from happening.
In this section you will learn about the national Quality and Safeguarding Framework, privacy and confidentiality, commitment to quality and continuous improvement.
The quality of your service may be measured by looking at how supports and services are delivered as well as by the outcomes achieved for individuals, their families, workers and service providers.
Each person has the right to complain about the quality or delivery of a service and has the opportunity to participate fully in the process of complaint resolution.
Welcoming feedback and seeing concerns as an opportunity to improve will help to create a positive environment for you, your colleagues and your customers.
Feedback is an important way for people to have a say about a service.
All service providers should have a feedback process which encourages and welcomes comments, compliments or suggestions that can lead to ways of improving service delivery, systems or processes. In this way, service providers can build relationships, and work with each person to identify and attempt to resolve any issues before it escalates to a complaint.
Complaints play an essential role in the continuous improvement cycle by identifying areas for improvement which can deliver positive outcomes for people with a disability, their families and carers.
A complaint is when a person indicates that they have an issue with the quality or delivery of the service they are receiving and are seeking resolution. Complaints can be made in a number of ways including informally, in writing and verbally. Participants can make a complaint directly to the service provider, to an external body or to the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission.
Service providers should include this information to inform service planning, identify areas for improvement and put in place strategies to address any areas requiring change at an individual or organisational level.
It is important that you understand what the feedback and complaints processes are so that you know what do to if someone raises concerns with you.
The payment and receipt of supports are commercial transactions. Should disputes arise the Participant and service provider must, in the first instance, attempt to resolve the matter outlined in the Service Agreement.
If complaints are made to an independent government body about a service or support purchased with NDIS funding the relevant mechanism will depend on the nature of the complaint.
The following mechanism are available for NDIS Participants:
Anyone can raise a complaint about potential breaches of the NDIS Code of Conduct, and the NDIS Quality and Safeguarding Commissioner can investigate the complaints.
Along with the NDIS Practice Standards, the NDIS Code of Conduct is used by the NDIS Quality and Safeguarding Commission to provide education and build capacity, ensure compliance and also apply civil penalties. As a last resort, the NDIS Commission may also ban workers or providers from operating in the NDIS market.
For more information see the Fact Sheet: How to make a complaint document for NDIS participants on the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission website:
Reportable incidents can threaten the health, safety or wellbeing of people with disability, and can have a significant impact on people with disability, workers, families, carers, community members and NDIS providers. Reportable incidents also offer providers an opportunity to review their operational practices to improve the quality and delivery of supports and services to NDIS participants and prevent future harm.
The main objectives of the NDIS Commission’s reportable incidents scheme are to promote:
For more about reportable incidents see information hub Your G8Way to the Support Worker Role: Safe Work Practices.
Improvements could be made in any aspect of your work. How you engage with a Participant, how you deliver a service, what activities are available and what training and processes are in place to support you are all areas where regular reflection and review can inform continuous improvement.
If you cannot say whether a Participant is making steps to achieve their goals, you should see that as a sign that something needs to change.
Plan, Do, Check, Act is a procedure for continuous improvement and may also be used when you are trying something new or making change. It is a simple way to identify, measure and assess how goals (be they your own or those of a Participant, a service, a task or an organisation) are being achieved.
Plan, Do, Check, Act can be applied to most areas of your work regardless of size, type or impact of the activity. The following scenario is an example of how it may be used: