Assistive Technology, also known as AT, is the equipment a person might use to help them with everyday tasks that they wouldn’t be able to do on their own, or makes it easier and safer to do. For a person living with disability, this might be equipment or systems which help with moving around the home or community, communicating with other people, processing information and other daily tasks. Every person living with a disability has different needs. AT may be included in your NDIS plan if it is identified as a reasonable and necessary support that meets your needs, and supports you to achieve better outcomes in life.
How does AT work under the NDIS?
Like many technologies, AT ranges from the really simple to the very complex, and sometimes you may need help to figure out what is the right AT solution for you. The NDIA uses four levels to describe the different complexity of AT. This often influences how it is funded in a participant’s plan, including the level of support needed to support it.
Level 1 AT are simple and generally low-cost items.
This can include modified cutlery for people with a hand or arm disability, or visual door bells for people who are hard of hearing. In between, there are some items that you can walk in to a shop and try (such as standard shower chairs), while for others, you may need to be measured for the item to be made and adjusted to your specific needs – including set up for your home.
The most complex items are Level 4 AT – for example, specialised seating systems configured uniquely for a person with a significant spinal injury. There is more detail about these levels in the AT Complexity Level Classification document on the NDIS website.
How do I get the AT I need?
You can work with your NDIS planner or Local Area Coordinator to identify whether you may require help in selecting and setting up the right AT for you. If the type of equipment you need requires additional help to select and set up, or involves training for you to be able to learn how to use, this will also be added in your plan.
You can find more detailed information about how to manage your assistive technology supports, including home and vehicle modifications on the assistive technology page of the NDIS website.
For more information visit the website: www.ndis.gov.au or call 1800 800 110.