Senator the Hon. Mathias Cormann
Minister for Finance
The Government will carry out further consultations with the hearing community about the findings of the scoping study into Australian Hearing before making any decisions on future ownership options. This consultation will also focus on the implications of the introduction of the National Disability Insurance Scheme for government funded hearing services.
The full introduction of the National Disability Insurance Scheme, expected by 2019-20, will significantly change the way hearing services are delivered to Community Service Obligation client groups including:
- Children and adults up to age 26;
- Eligible Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people; and
- Voucher eligible adults with complex hearing needs.
Australian Hearing currently delivers all Community Service Obligation hearing services in Australia under the Government’s Hearing Services Program.
The introduction of the National Disability Insurance Scheme as initiated by the former government, will open the delivery of Community Service Obligation hearing services to competition, giving clients greater choice of providers and the hearing devices, services and support on offer.
The Government will engage with stakeholders as it develops and implements a plan for Community Service Obligation clients to transition to the NDIS during its national rollout, and to prepare the hearing industry to offer quality support for its clients.
The Government will also consult with groups representing the hearing community and report back to Government in the second half of the 2015 calendar year.
Karen Wu - 0428 350 139