Elizabeth navigates the NDIS

By Claire Absolum, 12 September 2017 , Comments

If, like many of us, you are feeling time poor, spare a thought for Elizabeth Horton who is one of our customers living on the Central Coast. Elizabeth has Spina Bifida which is a condition affecting about one in 500 babies in Australia. The condition causes damage to the spinal cord in utero, which can then lead to paralysis or weakness in legs amongst other health issues later in life.

Elizabeth uses a wheelchair for mobility and has lived independently for the past three years. She’s also involved in a head spinning list of activities and works in a number of casual contracted positions. These include running a social group for people with disability on the Central Coast and being a part of the National Disability Services (NDS) Project Able and Zero Tolerance teams. These are national initiatives that promote disability awareness in schools and human rights for people with disability. On top of this, Elizabeth is studying a Diploma of Mental Health and has previously completed a Diploma in Community Services and a Certificate IV in Youth Work.

While all of this is going on, like many of our customers, Elizabeth also has to navigate a new world of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). Supporting her enormously through this process is Northcott’s Spina Bifida Adult Resource team (SBART). Elizabeth calls SBART her, ‘one stop Spina Bifida shop’. “The team supports me in so many ways. They attend medical appointments and provide me with an ongoing list of resources. If I have any questions about Spina Bifida, or professionals I engage with do, the team liaises with them on my behalf.”

Elizabeth says that the support from SBART, particularly while she navigates the NDIS, is invaluable. “The fact that the NDIS is such a challenge at moment, especially for people with cognitive issues, makes the team at SBART even more important. I would simply be lost without them. I would be an absolute mess and I wouldn’t be where I am today.”

 To find out how SBART can assist you or your child phone 1800 818 286.


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