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3 years ago

MSWA Bulletin Magazine Spring 2019

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  • Bulletin
  • Neurological
  • Disability
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  • Researchers
  • Accommodation
  • Ndis
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FROM THE DESK OF THE CEO MARCUS STAFFORD CEO With a very successful and rewarding financial year now behind us, MSWA heads into the future with excitement and a new strategic plan that will guide us for the next three years. With the support of our MSWA community I am confident that future indicators will continue to look very positive for our organisation. Outside the office and with the arrival of warmer days, I have been out and about on my bike, making sure that I get my vitamin D intake, whilst also doing some light training for the MSWA Ocean Ride. In November I will be having a go at the 30km Ocean Ride from Fremantle to Hillary’s - for the fun of doing it and supporting our great organisation at the same time. I’m very lucky that I’ll be doing this with a team of MSWA staff. Together we will be pushing the stragglers up the hills and crossing the finishing line together in a sea of branded MSWA T-shirts. While I’ll probably be one of the stragglers, needing a helpful push up the hills myself at times, my motivation is knowing that the money we raise is going directly towards supporting Western Australians living with a neurological condition – making up 19% of folk with disabilities living in WA. By placing our ‘Customer’ at the heart of our operating model and of everything we do, and through the incorporation of commercial principles, MSWA has performed strongly within the NDIS environment in the past. Given the intricacy of the roll-out of the federally funded NDIS on 1 December 2017, it was always going to take some time to get it right. A few contributing factors have meant there have been some delays with the NDIS in our current market. Firstly, hiring and training a workforce capable of meeting the demands of a new service structure across a country the size and complexity of Australia was always going to be a challenge. There are also concerns about the application of the NDIS’s Temporary Transformation Payment (TTP) to eligible plans from 1 July 2019. This is a conditional loading to help providers with any costs transitioning to the NDIS - having financial implications for both service providers and people with a disability. I could talk platitudes and hone my diplomatic language, but to be honest, as a usually cool and calm guy, I’m pretty frustrated at the moment. I know that the rollout of such a major scheme is no small feat, but I feel that bureaucracy and a fear of making a mistake is holding this thing up unnecessarily. As an organisation it’s disappointing. But as a person with a disability it would be driving me mad! “I’ve been through all of the right processes and done all of the right things. My plan is written and ready to go. I just need someone in a Government office in Geelong to rubber stamp it and my quality of life can improve instantly.” As the CEO of this progressive organisation and as a pragmatist who accepts that you need to crack a few eggs to make a decent omelette, it really shouldn’t be this hard! While the delay in getting eligible participants over the line with their plan is frustrating, it’s important to note this is happening across all organisations and something the Government is well aware of. I look forward to Government’s move from awareness to urgent action! Every day, we advocate on behalf of our disability Members and Customers. Please continue to give us your feedback and we will do everything that we can to make things better. Feedback on MSWA and the NDIS is warmly welcomed. As the biggest change in the health sector since Medicare, the NDIS sounds like a great thing, but only if it’s working well for the people it is designed to serve. MSWA’s goal has always been to provide our Customers with personalised support throughout their NDIS experience and this is something we will continue to do now and into the future. Our focus is all about ensuring that our Customers receive the best outcome. And with that, we embrace the challenges of our new financial year. Never ones to rest on our laurels, we are determined to play our part in fixing the gaps in the system and we very much looking forward to what lies ahead. 4

STRATEGIC SUPPORTS AND RESIDENTIAL OPTIONS SUE SHAPLAND RN, BN, MSCN GENERAL MANAGER STRATEGIC SUPPORTS AND RESIDENTIAL OPTIONS “The only place where success comes before work is in the dictionary.” Unknown. Isn’t that the truth? Well, for most of us anyway, although I guess some folks get lucky. Once again, our hard work has paid off and we have had another successful and record-breaking financial year. It’s always a real team effort and we can look back proudly and thank every one of the staff, volunteers, our Members and Clients, our event participants and those who have bought tickets in our lotteries or donated to our cause. Together we managed to achieve great success and delivered record service hours; and made a real difference for many people in WA living with MS and other neurological conditions. Our success has seen us allocate a record-breaking .5 million to research this year, with .5 million for MS projects and million for other neurological research being conducted in WA. We will provide more detail about these exciting research projects in the next Bulletin. One of my favourite jobs is confirming funding allocations to the various organisations as it often means the difference between them being able to progress with their projects or shelve them for a year. Our accommodation facilities are all full and we now have a waitlist. With the NDIS providing funding in a timelier fashion, more participants in need of supported living options are being funded more quickly and consequently there is a shortage of places. I am excitedly looking forward to building our next premises in Albany and, in time, in Shenton Park. We are very proud of our residential units and rightly so, they get better and better as we gain more experience. Don’t forget we have beautiful Respite Houses, in City Beach and Australind, where you can stay and take a break from the routine and/or give your carer a well-earned break. Funding can be sought through your NDIS plan or you can contact us for more information and to make bookings. In 2020 the NDIS will expand the Quality and Safeguarding Commission into WA. The Commission is responsible for registering providers and monitoring their compliance with both the NDIS Practice Standards and the National Disability Standards. Whilst we have ongoing accreditation, through auditing and assessments through the Department of Communities - Disability Services, we will now be required to re-register as a provider and appoint external auditors to conduct a review of all aspects of our business. So, we are working our way through what is different and what we need to change and/or implement to meet accreditation. This will be a real team effort across the organisation, but I am optimistic we will meet the standards required. I hope you enjoy this edition of the Bulletin and that you also find the Research Roundup of interest. Have you checked out our new webpage? It’s looking pretty good and refreshed with additional content and our new advertising campaign. Spring has sprung, and the sneezy season is upon us again; the flu season has really wreaked havoc with many staff, Members and their families and the community at large. I hope most of you have kept well! Once again, the year is flying by and the Christmas silly season will be our next adventure or trial, depending on how you view it! 5