What are you doing to ensure you are NDIS ready when it comes to your client’s continence care?


The impact of incontinence on an individual can be devastating in terms of a person’s ability to participate in many life areas, including the confidence to gain employment, or increased social isolation. It is not uncommon to hear spinal injured patients say: “If I had the choice to walk again or get back the use of my bowel and bladder, I would rather have the use of my bowel and bladder and use a wheelchair the rest of my life and never walk again”.

The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) has shifted the reimbursement landscape, providing an opportunity for disabled people with continence issues to access the products that are reasonable and necessary so that they can live an inclusive and fulfilling life with minimal interference from their continence issues.

Currently there are a number of existing state and federal funding models whereby disabled people can access funding for incontinence, such as CAPs, SWEP and ENABLE. This source of funding for those individuals will cease when they transition into the NDIS.

There is an opportunity for every nurse to play a role

Any nurse who sees clients with a disability can help in guiding their clients through their transition into the NDIS.

Coloplast’s recent NDIS participant survey found that:

  • Unless continence is actively raised by the participant or the planner it may completely missed all together
  • 25% of survey participants did not have continence raised at all during their planning meeting
  • 40% of participants would like to make changes to their continence supports in their next NDIS meeting

For nurses who are seeing clients who have a disability and require continence supports, it is clear that they need information and support!

In fact, participants interviewed as part of Coloplast’s NDIS participant survey said: “I didn’t even know I could have included continence products on the plan” and “I would have appreciated more information about the different products available before my planning meeting”.

Coloplast’s dedicated team of NDIS advisors are helping people to understand more about the NDIS and if individual’s are entering it, how they can best prepare for their NDIS planning meeting in regards to their continence needs. The team guide participants by providing them access to an NDIS Participant Continence Support Pack for the participant to document the continence supports they may need on an annual bases and explore other continence solutions that may help them live a more active and rewarding life.

You can direct your clients to call the freecall Contience hotline on 1800 880 427.

There is also support for nurses who are assessing as part of the NDIS

For nurses assessing in the scheme, product choices must be expressed in a different language, which means that you will need to rethink your clients continence needs in terms of workforce participation and social inclusion.

To help ensure that your clients can access the best products to meet their continence needs the NDIS are looking for assessors to justify why these products are reasonable and necessary based on clinical evidence and best practice. We have tools that can help you justify products for continence management consistent with the new language required for NDIS pre-planning.

Independence Australia can guide Victorian residents in understanding how to navigate the NDIS. To find out how to access our disability services now and get NDIS ready, call 1300 704 456 or email theteam@iagroup.org.au. For residents in other states, information can be accessed from www.ndis.gov.au