HERE TO HELP: Endeavour Foundation's Vanna Aspinall with client Dian Griggs.
HERE TO HELP: Endeavour Foundation's Vanna Aspinall with client Dian Griggs. Marian Faa

NDIS providers promise to fill the gap

QUESTIONS about who will provide disability support in Southern Downs towns have surfaced as major Queensland Health NDIS provider Community Options announces it will withdraw services for NDIS clients in the region.

The Darling Downs Hospital and Health Service has asked 159 clients to make alternative arrangements with private NDIS providers.

Fifty of these were based in Warwick.

Warwick and District Disability Support Group president Peter Stacy said he had been contacted by a number of families who didn't know where to go.

"The NDIS is so new and finding another service provider is going to be difficult,” he said.

Endeavour Foundation support and operations manager Vanna Aspinall said she had reached out to Community Options management to say her organisation would be able to take on new NDIS clients.

"We're just here to support where needed,” Ms Aspinall said.

Particular concerns have been raised by the families of six people who currently receive 24/7 supported accommodation in two Community Options Warwick-based homes.

"In terms of providing alternatives for getting the houses managed, there are very few new options. It is a major major problem,” Mr Stacy said.

Ms Aspinall said Endeavour Foundation would be able to take over care of the two houses.

"There are a lot of services Endeavour can provide that the community wouldn't be aware of unless they asked,” she said.

Ms Aspinall said Endeavour could provide employment, volunteering opportunities, independent living, in-home support, learning and lifestyle services, and specialists like speech therapists.

"I think the NDIS is such a positive scheme that gives people with disabilities more options within their lives,” she said.

A Darling Downs Hospital and Health Service representative said the NDIS rollout meant new providers were entering the market.

"The decision will allow other suppliers to service this market and is an opportunity for local community care providers to increase their activity.”

Mr Stacy also said the answer for Community Options clients lay in emerging businesses like Blue Care, Churches of Christ and the St Vincent de Paul Society.

"The NDIS is fundamentally changing how people with disabilities access support,” he said.

"Now the clients are saying 'we want this service, are you in or out'.”

Mr Stacy said the transition would be uncomfortable and uncertain for some but services would be available.


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