What support can I receive with a Spinal Cord Injury? | MyCareSpace

What support can I receive with a Spinal Cord Injury?

Young man seated in wheelchair beside female carer seated on couch

NDIS Support for Spinal Cord Injury

If you have an NDIS plan, you can receive funding for support related to your needs due to your spinal cord injury. This can involve support in the home to assist you with day to day tasks, or in the community to assist you attend appointments, grocery shopping, socialise - the list goes on!


What home and community support can I receive related to my Spinal Cord Injury? 

The support services you require depends on the following factors:

  • What is your level of independence? 
  • What are your support needs with particular tasks?
  • What do you wish to achieve in your day?

The person who can provide you with this support under the NDIS is called a support worker or carer. You can access support to assist with some or all of your activities of daily living, depending on your needs.

The level of support at home will depend on the impact your spinal cord injury has on your capacity to participate in these activities.


Support in the Home

Having one support worker assist you with your needs is described as a 1:1 ratio of support.

In some cases, two support workers may be necessary for manual handling, involving transferring between surfaces with or without use of assistive technology. This is a 2:1 ratio of support.

A 2:1 ratio of support may be necessary ensure your safety and the safety of the support workers. Two support workers may also be required to assist with personal care routines due to the complexity of your needs. The NDIS can fund two support workers in these instances too.


Support in the Community

The frequency and intensity of community-based support you recieve will depend on the level of support you require. If you are a wheelchair user, you may require additional support to manage any environmental barriers faced in community settings. Transport assistance is also available through the NDIS.


What NDIS funding is available for support?

In your NDIS Plan are there three budgets:

  • Core Supports
  • Capacity Building Supports
  • Capital Supports

The Core Support budget is where you access funding for support received in the home and community related to your spinal cord injury.


What are Core Supports in the NDIS?

The Core Supports budget includes funding for support workers, in addition to funding for low cost assistive technology, consumables and transport related to your disability needs.

Core Support funding includes supports to help you with:

  • your everyday living activities
  • your current disability-related needs
  • to help you work towards your longer-term goals


What are the Core Support Categories?

There are five support categories within Core Supports:

  1. Assistance with Daily Life
  2. Transport
  3. Consumables
  4. Assistance with Social, Economic and Community Participation
  5. Home and living

1. Assistance with Daily Life

My Place Portal Title: Daily Activities

Funding for a support worker to help you with everyday tasks at home, such as:

  • Home cleaning
  • Household chores (i.e. laundry)
  • Gardening/yard maintenance
  • Meal preparation (i.e. cooking for you in your home)
  • Personal care, grooming and hygiene (i.e. helping you shower and with your personal care routines)
  • Overnight sleepover support or assistance from a live-in carer

2. Consumables

My Place Portal Title: Consumables

Funding for single or multi use products that may include:

  • Continence Aids - Products related to continence and toileting management. Examples include: pads, catheters, bed and chair protection, urinals and bed pans etc
  • Nutrition - Products required for enteral feeding, supplements, thickeners etc
  • Skin/Wound Care - Products to treat any pressure injuries, wounds or skin conditions related to your disability. Examples include: dressings, bandages, pressure care aids etc
  • Low Cost Assistive Technology (AT) - Items under $1500 you need to increase your independence and/or safety when receiving support when engaging in activities of daily living. Examples include: shower stool, dressing stick, long-handled shoe horn, jar opener, modified chopping board etc.

3. Assistance with Social, Economic and Community Participation

My Place Portal Title: Social, Community and Civic Participation

This is support to help you to engage in social or recreational activities and become more involved in your community.

Services can involve a support worker transporting you to an activity in the community and participate with others.

If you need support to access a course or activity that is non-disability specific, NDIS funding can be used to cover the cost of a support worker assisting you to access and engage in these activities, but not the activity itself.

4. Transport

My Place Portal Title: Transport 

If you have challenges travelling related to your spinal cord injury, transport services can help you travel to work or other places that will help you pursue the goals in your NDIS plan.

Supports the NDIS generally don’t fund:

  • Travel for other members of the family, carers, or service providers
  • Transport to everyday commitments (like school)


Can I recieve nursing support through the NDIS?

Nursing support is available to NDIS participants who have disability related medical needs. You can access nursing services for the delivery of health supports through your Core Support budget, in the category Assistance with Daily Life.

There is also funding avaialble for the delivery of disability related health supports by a nurse through your Capacity Building budget, in the category of Improved Daily Living.

Depending on your specific needs, you can recieve suport from an:

  • enrolled nurse
  • registered nurse
  • clinical nurse
  • clnical nurse consultant
  • nurse practitoner 

Input for nursing relevent to your spinal cord may involve wound care management, related to a pressure injury, or a continence assessment and intervention related to bladder or bowel care. You may require nursing input related to breathing and circulation.


Do all support workers and nurses cost the same?

The cost of support workers and nursing care varies. The factors to consider involve:

  • Time of day of services - daytime, evening and overnight
  • Overnight support - active or inactive
  • Week day or weekend support
  • Complexity of your care support needs
  • Qualification/training requirements of the support worker or nurse in related to your care needs

The various costs are outlined in the NDIS Pricing Arrangements and Price Limits (previously the NDIS Price Guide)

This document is usually updated annually by the NDIA.

As it can be a little tricky to nagivate, MyCareSpace have developed a fantastic easy to read NDIS Price List Finder. Enter in a keywork, line number or line item name to find out the specific details you need.

MyCareSpace NDIS Price List Finder


Can I use my Core Support budget flexibly?

The NDIS allows for flexibility between the different categories within your Core Support budget. 

For example, if you have funding allocated in Assistance with Social, Economic and Community Participation, however you determine you would prefer to have more support in the home, you can use the funding flexibility across these categories within Core Supports to access the support you need.


Can funding from Core Supports be used flexibly with Capacity Building or Capital Supports?

There is less flexiblity between the main three budgets: Core Supports, Capacity Building and Capital Supports.

In most cases, funding cannot be used flexibility across the main budgets. Only funding allocated within Core is flexible amongst itself.

For further information, read here to Understand your NDIS Plan.


Where can I find Core Support providers?

MyCareSpace Connections Team can assist you to nagivate the NDIS and find the right support provider for you.

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Our Connections Team at MyCareSpace are linked in with a range of providers offering telehealth services with availability. Let our team help you navigate the NDIS and find the right service for you.
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