For people with disabilities, there’s often a whole team of service providers, friends and family that rally around them –this is definitely the case for Garry. Supported primarily by his sisters Sue and Robyn, Garry’s complex needs have been challenging. But an ongoing partnership with OnSide has made parts of the journey much easier to bear.
Managing multiple care needs
Many customers that our Support Coordinators work with often have more than one health and/or mobility issue to manage. In situations like this, a lot of the responsibility for care can fall on family members, like Sue and Robyn.
“Garry is 64 and has schizophrenia and Parkinson’s disease,” Sue explains. “His Parkinson’s, sadly, is now quite advanced. He’s also had schizophrenia since he was 20, but Parkinson’s has probably been for about the last 15 years.”
“He qualified for the NDIS close to four or five years ago. He started out with homecare just a couple of hours a day, probably four or five days a week. But due to a series of deteriorations, and some very bad falls, which put him in hospital for six weeks, we realised that he really needed 24/7 care.”
A lasting partnership
When Garry first qualified for NDIS funding, Sue and Robyn were looking for Support Coordination to get Garry’s NDIS plan up and running.
“We’ve really been partnered with OnSide right from the beginning of that journey. OnSide was recommended to us by an early pre-NDIS carer and they actually helped us prepare our very first NDIS plan for Garry.”
“At the start, we used OnSide’s NDIS plan booklet,” Sue recalls. “It prompts you with questions to complete the first plan application, which was really helpful.”
“When we put Garry’s first plan into place, it was a bit of a nightmare because of course, you’ve got to source all your providers and Garry needed a lot of different services. But OnSide partnered with us in that process, which made it a lot easier than would otherwise have been.”
Since that first NDIS Plan application and Plan Meeting, Garry’s OnSide Support Coordinators have helped Sue and Robyn significantly in drafting each NDIS Plan Review.
“They’ve [Support Coordinators] have attended, at our request, our NDIS Plan Review meetings, providing significant valuable advocacy,” Sue shares. “We’re sure this has helped enormously in maximising the funding that has been approved each time for Garry.”
“This advocacy has also carried over to helping us with the required approvals for special equipment during the life of a Plan, which has even included securing approval to purchase a scooter for Garry.”
The right kind of support
In the beginning, Garry needed both equipment and home adjustments, which his Support Coordinator assisted with. Now, with Garry’s care needs changing, the focus is shifting more towards prioritising Garry’s safety above all else.
“Our current Support Coordinator, Fleur, is the best one we’ve ever had,” Sue recognises. “I mean, she’s just fantastic – very proactive, very organised and gets things happening really quickly.”
“When Garry was in hospital after the bad fall, the medical team were very uncertain about letting Garry go home unless his care was increased to 24/7,” Sue explains. “So organising this, along with the related new equipment he needed (e.g. a hospital bed), was critical to being able to keep Garry at home, which he desperately wanted.
“Fleur was the central coordinator for setting this all up and at very short notice. Robyn and I often say that we don’t know how we would’ve gotten through it all without the NDIS and OnSide’s continued support.”
For complex support needs, you can trust OnSide
Our team of dedicated Support Coordinators can support you and your loved one as they navigate the NDIS. From putting together your first application, to your annual NDIS plan review, contact OnSide to learn how we can be there every step of the way.