Social services minister, Christian Porter claims technical issues that have plagued the National Disability Insurance Scheme’s (NDIS) payment portal are almost fixed.
The NDIS has been experiencing issues related to the uploading of provider data to the MyPlace portal, which resulted in delays to payments being issued to the agency. As a result, there were disruptions and delays in payments being made to providers and participants through the portal.
“I have been working closely with the NDIA (National Disability Insurance Agency), and now the successful payments to providers and participants have increased from around 70 per cent to a 96 per cent success rate,” Porter said.
Porter and assistant minister for social services and disability services, Jane Prentice, began a review into the portal on August 5.
“Based on the initial advice from PwC, as well as a short-lived technical issue experienced by bulk service providers, there was also an issue around the adequacy of information provided to users of the payment portal, which led to errors in inputting necessary information. That situation is improving rapidly and significantly,” he said.
While the NDIA diverted resources to resolve the early IT issues as quickly as possible, there was a flow on effect of a slowdown in the rate of plan approvals for the large number of people deemed eligible for the scheme, he added.
Since July 1, more than 15,000 Australians have been deemed eligible, which is more than 78 per cent of the bilateral target for the first quarter of transition, Porter said. More than 5,000 of those people have commenced the planning process or had their plan approved.
“I have requested the NDIA board chair to take action to resolve outstanding issues around information to portal users and ensure that transitional plan approval remains on target in the first two quarters of transition,” Porter said.
Porter said he asked the NDIA to take some immediate action prior to a PwC report being finalised.
This includes establishing an NDIS transition management team to address all outstanding portal issues, plan approval targets and communication with the sector; and appointing a chief operating officer to oversee all NDIA’s operational matters.
It also includes ensuring more robust reporting is undertaken on key metrics around portal issue resolution and plan approval rates; and establishing stronger information sharing arrangements between the NDIA, the Department of Social Services (DSS), and the Department of Human Services (DHS).
More than 100 extra staff from the DSS and DHS have been provided to the NDA to implement these actions.