Assisting a family member or friend with an NDIS application? Consider writing a support letter to aid the assessment process!
While the NDIA may not request one, a support letter outlining the applicant's goals, daily support needs, and impact on the carer can be beneficial. Our guide explains how to write an NDIS support letter, what information to include, and where to find help if needed.
If you’re not quite sure how to write an NDIS support letter that checks all the right boxes, Like Family is here to provide our top tips for getting the care and support you need.
What exactly is an NDIS support letter?
An NDIS support letter is a document that provides additional evidence to support a person's NDIS application. It is typically written by a support worker or carer who is familiar with the applicant's needs and daily routines.
The support letter should highlight the everyday challenges and difficulties the applicant faces due to their disability or condition. This can include information about the participant's mobility, communication, personal care, and any other areas where support is required.
It is also helpful to provide information about the participant's goals and aspirations, as well as any achievements or progress they have made in their journey towards greater independence and self-reliance.
In addition, the letter can also include information about the impact the caring role has on the carer. This can be helpful in demonstrating the applicant's need for additional support and resources, as well as highlighting the importance of providing appropriate respite.
When may a support letter be needed?
An NDIS support letter may be needed as part of an applicant's supporting evidence during the NDIS application process. While the second part of the NDIS access request form should be completed by a treating health professional, the NDIA may request additional support letters from medical professionals, support workers, or carers. The purpose of a support letter is to provide additional information and evidence that helps to build a comprehensive picture of the applicant's needs and circumstances.
This can include details about the applicant's disability or condition, the level of care and support required, and any other relevant information that can help the NDIA make an informed decision about the participant's eligibility for the NDIS. Even if the NDIA does not specifically request support letters, providing them can make the application stronger and improve the chances of a successful outcome.
It's important to note that the content of the support letter should be focused on the applicant's needs and circumstances. It should provide specific examples and details to illustrate the applicant's daily challenges and support requirements. Seek guidance from professionals when writing a support letter, to ensure that it meets the requirements and guidelines set by the NDIA.
What to include in an NDIS support letter
When writing an NDIS support letter, it's important to provide specific and detailed information about the applicant's needs and circumstances. Here are some key points to consider when writing a support letter:
Introduction: Start by introducing yourself and your relationship to the applicant. Include details about how long you have been providing support, and the nature of the support you provide.
Support provided: Outline the level and types of support you provide, including any specialised care or therapies that the applicant requires. Be specific about how often you provide support and how many hours per week you spend providing care.
Informal supports: Mention any other informal supports the applicant has in their life, such as family members, friends, carers, or services. This can help provide a comprehensive picture of the applicant's support network.
Impact of disability: Describe how the applicant's health condition or disability impacts their day-to-day life. This may include:
- Mobility: Describe any difficulties the applicant has with movement, getting around, or accessing different environments.
- Communication: Outline any challenges the applicant faces with communication, such as difficulty speaking or understanding others.
- Personal care: Describe any challenges the applicant has with personal care, such as bathing, dressing, or toileting.
- Emotional and social well-being: Describe any challenges the applicant has with emotional regulation or social interaction.
- Goals: Outline the applicant's goals and aspirations, and how these relate to their support needs. Include any achievements or progress that the applicant has made towards greater independence and self-reliance.
Tips for writing a great NDIS support letter
Writing an NDIS support letter can be a crucial step in the application process. By following these steps, you can write an effective NDIS support letter that provides a clear and detailed picture of the applicant's needs and circumstances.
- Use specific examples: In your support letter, you should address all of the relevant NDIS support categories. Use specific examples that highlight the functional impact in each category for the applicant.
- Be concise and focused: Use clear and concise language when writing your support letter. Avoid jargon that may be difficult for the reader to understand.
- Structure your letter: A common way to structure an NDIS support letter is to go through each of the categories and explain the functional impact of each category for the applicant. You can also include an introduction and a conclusion that summarise the key points made in the letter.
- Seek guidance: If you're unsure about how to structure your letter or what information to include, speak with a Local Area Coordinator. They can provide guidance and support throughout the process.
What to include in a carer impact statement
A carer impact statement, also known as a carer statement, is a document that outlines the impact of caring for an NDIS applicant on the carer or the applicant's family. Here are some steps to follow when writing a carer impact statement:
- Introduce yourself: Start by introducing yourself and your relationship to the NDIS applicant. Include details about how long you have been providing care, and the nature of the care you provide.
- Describe the impact of caring: Explain the physical, emotional and social impact that caring for the applicant has had on you and the applicant's family.
- Discuss future care needs: Explain whether you can continue to provide care for the applicant in the same way in the future. If changes are needed, describe what those changes might be and what impact they may have on you and the applicant's family.
- Discuss the need for extra support: Explain what extra support and funding would mean for you and the applicant's family. This can include information about any specific needs or requirements that you have, as well as any areas where additional support could make a significant difference.
- Provide additional information: Include any other information that might help the NDIS assessment process. This can include details about your own health and well-being, any challenges or difficulties you have faced as a carer, and any other relevant information.
Remember to keep your carer impact statement concise and focused, and to provide specific examples and details to support your points.
And what you don’t need to include
While it's important to provide detailed information about the impact of caring, there are certain pieces of information that are not necessary to include in a carer impact statement. These may include:
- Other health conditions that are not related to the applicant's disability: The carer impact statement should focus specifically on the impact of caring for the NDIS applicant, and should not include information about unrelated health conditions.
- Suggestions for support needs in an NDIS plan: The carer impact statement should focus on the impact of caring, rather than making suggestions for support needs. This information can be included in other parts of the NDIS application.
- Symptom management strategies: While it's important to provide information about the challenges of caring, it's not necessary to provide detailed information about specific symptom management strategies.
Access quality NDIS support with Like Family
We're a proud NDIS provider specialising in social and community support. We help participants increase their independence and connect with their community, while providing much needed respite to their friends and families.
Our flat hourly rates are 20% below the NDIS price guide, so you or a loved one can get more support hours out of your funding.
If you need a hand finding a support worker in your local area, we'd be happy to help you out! Sign up below, or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org