What Does NDIS Pay For?

Image of three girls fitting large blue puzzle pieces together

Image of three girls fitting large blue puzzle pieces together.


This is a guest blog post from Cheryl McDonnell, a parent who has been through the NDIS process. Many thanks to Cheryl for these handy facts and tips!


The NDIS won’t pay for your groceries, but they will pay for a support person to take you shopping if that is a support that you need.
Think of the things that any non-disabled person pays for themselves, these are the things that NDIS does not pay. Belonging to a club or sport, registration for these or uniform and basic equipment are all costs a non-disabled person pays for themselves.
Any costs above and beyond that, which are incurred because of the presence of an impairment are things the NDIS may pay.
Support and equipment that non-disabled people do not need such as wheelchairs, hospital type beds, modifications to the house or car, specialised sport equipment, a support worker to help with any activities of daily living like showers, meal preparation, communication, etc; technology that is related to having a disability such as anything from simple things like a long handled shoe horn through to complicated items such as environmental controls that make you more independent will be covered by NDIS.
When it comes to children there are certain costs that all parents need to pay such as child minding, pre school fees nappies for infants etc these costs are not covered by the NDIS. Costs such as continence aids for older children, support to take part in activities, and equipment that is related to the impairments will be covered.
Remember not all non-disabled children attend sports, dancing, music, swimming etc because the parents can not afford such things so not being able to afford it is a part of life for some people. It is possible though that once the NDIS meets all of the disability related extraordinary costs you may be in a financial position that allows you to meet costs for some extra-curricular activities.
For adults that have little experience of things like sports, outdoor activities etc it is possible that NDIS may provide some funding to be supported to explore and experience these things while the participant works out what they like and where their interests lie.
Consider the question. What is an ordinary life?
An ordinary life means a person carries out activities of daily living, like showering, grooming, meal preparation, eating, etc.
An ordinary life means a person makes choices for themselves about how they will spend their time and what is meaningful to them and who they will spend their time with.
An ordinary life means a person will choose, within their budget restraints where they will live and who they will live with.
An ordinary life means a person will choose what learning they will undertake and how they will undertake that learning.
The NDIS is intended to make an ordinary life possible for people who have an impairment that would otherwise exclude them from an ordinary life. The NDIS is intended to remove barriers by providing the equipment and support required for a person to be able to live an ordinary life.
Ask yourself what would I do if I had an ordinary life? Consider that some people are loners by nature, and others are more gregarious, some people are very active and others prefer more sedentary activities. Some people are learners and others are doers.
Who are you? As a unique individual what is it that you personally need to live the life you choose?


  1. Melanie says

    Thank you. This is the first time I feel like I understand what the NDIS is about.

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