Media Release by The Hon Jenny Macklin MP

DisabilityCare Australia to be rolled out in Queensland

Joint Media Release with:

  • Prime Minister Julia Gillard

    Premier of Queensland Campbell Newman
    Federal Minister for Disability Reform Jenny Macklin
    Queensland Minister for Disability Services Tracy Davis

The Gillard Government and Queensland Government have reached an historic agreement today that will see DisabilityCare Australia, the national disability insurance scheme, rolled out across Queensland by July 2019.

The agreement will provide around 97,000 Queenslanders with significant or profound disability choice and control over the care and support they receive.

DisabilityCare Australia will also give all Queenslanders peace of mind that if they have or acquire a disability, or have a child with disability, that leaves them needing daily care and support, they will get the support they need when they need it.

The agreements reached to date mean almost 90 per cent of Australians will be covered by DisabilityCare Australia in the event they are born with or acquire a disability.

Over the next couple of years, the Queensland Government will lay the groundwork for the introduction of DisabilityCare in Queensland, implementing reforms to disability services consistent with NDIS design principles including introducing greater consumer choice and control.

Eligible people with disability in Queensland will start entering DisabilityCare in July 2016. We will progressively roll out DisabilityCare Australia in Queensland so that by July 2019, all eligible Queensland residents will be covered.

Under the agreement reached today:

o By 2019-20, the Queensland Government will provide an estimated $2.03 billion to cover all Queenslanders. This contribution was determined using the benchmark set by New South Wales in the agreement reached with the Commonwealth in December 2012. The Queensland Government’s contribution will go to the cost of care and support for people with disability.

o By 2019-20, the Australian Government will contribute around $2.14 billion to the scheme for Queensland residents. This will be around 51 per cent of scheme costs. In addition, the Commonwealth will cover the full cost of people who turn 65 and choose to remain in the scheme.

o The full scheme costs will be reviewed by the Productivity Commission before to the commencement of full scheme to inform COAG agreement on final scheme funding arrangements.

Following the announcement last week by the Prime Minister, the Gillard Government has confirmed that, in 2019-20, an amount of $197 million will be allocated to Queensland from the increase in the Medicare Levy, to assist with the cost of the scheme in Queensland.

Today’s agreement builds on those with the governments of New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania and the Australian Capital Territory and the agreement to launch the scheme in the Barkly region of the Northern Territory.

The NDIS is the reform of a generation and has the potential to transform the lives of Queenslanders with a disability, their families and carers.

The Gillard Government will continue to work towards the national roll out of DisabilityCare Australia, so that all Australians can know that if they have, or acquire, a disability they will have their needs met in a way that enables them to live with choice and dignity.