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Making NDIS Specialised Support Work for You

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What is NDIS specialist support coordination?

support coordination is a higher level of assistance designed for individuals with complex disabilities. It focuses on simplifying complex situations by addressing and removing barriers, thus enhancing the overall support environment. If you’re dealing with a complex support environment, engaging a specialist support coordinator temporarily can help resolve issues and establish effective support systems for the future. These services are provided by experienced professionals with the necessary qualifications.

What does a specialist support coordinator do?

Specialist support coordination encompasses tasks similar to those of a support coordinator, such as organising disability support services. However, it primarily operates in more complex situations where there is a higher risk to the participant’s well-being. This may include scenarios where critical support is challenging to access without expert guidance.

A specialist support coordinator’s key role is to identify solutions for barriers hindering necessary support. This includes locating specialised support workers, especially in remote areas. They collaborate with the participant, their family, and caregivers to establish a supportive environment. This involves designing a service plan that facilitates cooperation among various service providers and ensures consistent service delivery, even in unexpected circumstances.

Furthermore, the specialist support coordinator focuses on helping the participant and their support network build capacity, resilience, and a robust circle of informal and formal support.

When is a specialist support coordinator needed?

To access specialist support coordination, it must be included in your NDIS plan. This service is exclusively available to NDIS participants facing high-risk situations and requiring expert assistance to address barriers and establish a support plan.

The NDIA incorporates specialist support coordination into an NDIS plan only when it is confident that it would significantly benefit the participant. It is reserved for highly complex cases and is not frequently included in plans. Furthermore, it is provided for a specific duration and is not intended to be an ongoing service.

Who can a specialist support coordinator help?

A specialist support coordinator can help you address barriers and risks that may impact your ability to achieve your NDIS goals. This includes situations like facing homelessness or involvement with other agencies such as the justice system or child protection services. The Specialist Support Coordinator will assist you in coordinating and linking to mainstream or state-funded services.

Moreover, a Specialist Support Coordinator can oversee your programs and case conferences, ensuring that all your services and supports operate effectively and cohesively together.

What’s the difference between a Support Coordinator and a Specialist Support Coordinator?

There is some overlap between Support Coordination and Specialist Support Coordination, and your NDIS plan can include various levels of support coordination funding. The primary distinction lies in Level 3 funding for Specialist Support Coordination, which is specifically geared toward addressing and managing risks or crisis situations. This funding provides you with the support needed to assess, identify, and implement strategies to help you achieve your goals and mitigate risks.

Your NDIS plan can include funding for both Support Coordination and Specialist Support Coordination, or you may receive funding exclusively for Specialist Support Coordination.

Specialist support for complex situations

Specialist Support Coordination, similar to regular Support Coordination, is designed to maximise the benefits of your NDIS plan by offering specialised support. However, unlike Support Coordination, its primary focus is aiding individuals with complex needs in accessing suitable supports and making informed decisions regarding their NDIS plans and goals.

Having Specialist Support Coordination in your NDIS plan grants you access to a higher level of support coordination provided by specialists such as Occupational Therapists, Psychologists, or Social Workers. These specialised coordinators assist you in managing activities related to specialised support and ensure the consistent delivery of services.


In conclusion, Specialist Support Coordination in the NDIS is a vital service for individuals with complex needs. Specialised coordinators address barriers, reduce risks, and design effective support plans, collaborating closely with participants and their support networks. While distinct from standard Support Coordination, it plays a crucial role in ensuring that those facing high-risk situations receive the expert guidance necessary to achieve their NDIS goals.

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