2021 Archives - Summer Foundation
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Andrew’s story – What life is like in aged care

Reasonable and Necessary: Making Sense of the NDIS is a podcast series by the Summer Foundation, hosted by our very own Dr George Taleporos.

Each podcast episode aims to simplify the NDIS for participants, their families and anyone supporting NDIS participants to work their way through the system.

Read More

Reasonable and Necessary: Making Sense of the NDIS is a podcast series by the Summer Foundation, hosted by our very own Dr George Taleporos.

Each podcast episode aims to simplify the NDIS for participants, their families and anyone supporting NDIS participants to work their way through the system.

Read More

The government expects that by 2025 up to 30,000 NDIS participants with ‘extreme functional impairment’ or ‘very high support needs’ will be receiving funding for Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA). Understanding the current and future supply of SDA housing is crucial for supporting the development of the SDA market. 

This report, Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) – Supply in Australia, is the fourth iteration of a national survey of SDA providers that aims to help inform stakeholders in the market.

You can view the previous editions of the SDA Supply Report through the links below:

Welcome to our “Best Practice” podcast series, produced by our UpSkill program. This podcast series features conversations with support coordinators who share their experiences of supporting people with disability and working alongside other sectors such as health, aged care and housing.

It also includes conversations with people with lived experience of disability who share how their support coordinators focused on them as individuals and supported them to achieve new goals relating to exploring housing options and moving to their own homes.

This series includes 4 episodes that focus on the different topics listed below. Episodes 1, 2 and 3 are in 2 parts, while episode 4 is 1 complete episode.

A number of resources are mentioned in each podcast and links to these are provided below. Transcripts for each episode and links to these are also provided.

EPISODE 1 – Supporting a person whose housing isn’t working for them

Part 1

Download or listen on SoundCloud

Supporting a person whose housing isn’t working for themPart 1:

  • Establishing what’s most important to the person and their housing preferences
  • Who else is important in the housing exploration process
  • Applying for Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) funding
  • Keeping participants informed
  • Escalating when you experience delays

Download transcript

Part 2

Download or listen on SoundCloud

Supporting a person whose housing isn’t working for themPart 2:

  • Supporting a person’s transition to their new home, including seeing the property or meeting people involved before they move
  • Supporting the person to live their life in their new home, and what to do if they change their mind
  • Establishing if the new home is working for the person

Download transcript

EPISODE 2 – Supporting a person who needs to leave hospital

Part 1

Download or listen on SoundCloud

Supporting a person who needs to leave hospitalPart 1:

  • Establishing what’s most important to the person in hospital
  • The differences in working with a new versus existing NDIS participant
  • Key areas of focus in the hospital setting
  • Working alongside health

Download transcript

Part 2

Download or listen on SoundCloud

Supporting a person who needs to leave hospitalPart 2:

  • Establishing a person’s housing and support preferences, including exploring short versus long-term housing
  • Using short-term NDIS plans in hospital
  • Establishing if the new home is working for the person
  • Achieving the impossible

Download transcript

EPISODE 3 – Supporting a person in aged care to live a better life

Part 1

Download or listen on SoundCloud

Supporting a person in aged care to live a better lifePart 1:

  • Establishing what’s most important to the person in aged care
  • Key supports for the person to leave aged care
  • Collaborating with aged care staff
  • Establishing the person’s housing and support preferences

Download transcript

Part 2

Download or listen on SoundCloud

Supporting a person in aged care to live a better lifePart 2:

  • Supporting a person’s transition out of aged care into their new home
  • Preparing for the person’s move
  • Establishing if the new home is working for the person

Download transcript

The Summer Foundation would like to thank Vasemaca Loki and Joanne Findlay; Sally and Jenny Messer; and Phi Tran – who shared their experiences with support coordination. We would also like to thank support coordinators – Lauren Lovegrove and Marnie Roelink from MND NSW; Alex Foote and Laura Schutz from Independence Australia; Jamie Woodman from Melbourne City Mission; and Linda Hughes, UpSkill Lead at the Summer Foundation for their generous contributions to this podcast series. 


The production of this UpSkill podcast series was supported by the Gandel Foundation.

Reasonable and Necessary: Making Sense of the NDIS is a podcast series by the Summer Foundation, hosted by our very own Dr George Taleporos.

Each podcast episode aims to simplify the NDIS for participants, their families and anyone supporting NDIS participants to work their way through the system.

Read More

Reasonable and Necessary: Making Sense of the NDIS is a podcast series by the Summer Foundation, hosted by our very own Dr George Taleporos.

Each podcast episode aims to simplify the NDIS for participants, their families and anyone supporting NDIS participants to work their way through the system.

Read More

This report is the second of two studies investigating accessible housing conducted through the Summer Foundation–La Trobe University research program, to inform decision-makers on incorporating minimum mandatory accessibility standards in the 2022 National Construction Code (NCC).

While past research has highlighted the negative impacts of inaccessible housing, little systematic evidence exists regarding the importance of specific accessible design features.

This study aimed to identify which accessible features would have the greatest positive impact on discharging patients from hospital and enabling older Australians to age at home. This study also examined which home modifications are most often needed, as well as quantified the delays to discharge arising from home modifications. It surveyed 134 Occupational therapists (OTs) who regularly conduct home visit assessments, and asked them to rate 22 accessible features according to impact on hospital discharge and/or ageing in place.

This study found that a lack of accessible features in all homes makes hospital discharge slower and ageing in place harder. The most important accessible features to consider as mandatory requirements for minimum access design in the NCC are:

  • A safe and step-free path to a step-free entrance into the dwelling
  • A 900 x 900mm shower with a step-free entry, on the ground floor
  • A toilet and space for a bedroom on the ground floor
  • Reinforced walls around the toilet, shower and bath to support the safe installation of grab rails at a later date

These features are important for both ageing in place and hospital discharge. Their inclusion as minimum standards will make homes more accessible for everyone. Without mandatory minimum accessibility standards, many post-build home modifications will remain necessary.

This study points to the inefficiencies of retrospectively modifying homes, rather than incorporating minimum accessibility features as standard in new homes.

Download the Preliminary Findings summary for this report.

This report is the first of two studies investigating accessible housing conducted through the Summer Foundation–La Trobe University research program. These reports provide an evidence base to inform decision-makers on incorporating minimum mandatory accessibility standards in the 2022 National Construction Code (NCC). This study seeks the expert opinions of access consultants and architects on how expensive and complicated it would be for builders to incorporate specific accessible features into all new homes. It surveyed 24 access consultants and architects with expert knowledge of the Livable Housing Australia Design Guidelines. The survey asked respondents to rate the relative cost and difficulty of incorporating 28 accessible features into new houses, apartments, and townhouses. The survey found that:

  1. A total of 12 features are inexpensive and easy to incorporate in all dwellings.
  2. Features that are costly or difficult to incorporate in one type of dwelling may be inexpensive and simple in another.
  3. Including accessible features during the design phase of new builds is the best way to ensure cost-effectiveness.
  4. Targeted exemptions to accessibility standards could mitigate issues arising in the minority of homes with site-specific challenges.

These findings indicate that a substantial proportion of the accessible features could be feasibly incorporated as mandatory minimum accessibility standards in the NCC.

Download the Preliminary Findings summary for this report.

The Housing Needs and Preferences to Support Discharge Guide and Template are for health professionals to support a person with disability to describe the housing and support they want and need so that they can be discharged to suitable housing.

By understanding a person’s housing needs and preferences, health teams can facilitate people with disability to exercise real choice and control over the type of housing they live in, where they live and who they live with. Working in a pressured health system can mean this task feels overwhelming. 

The guide and the template assist health teams to have a very important conversation with a person with disability in hospital. It is the first step in finding housing and moving patients along the discharge pathway more efficiently.

The guide and template are designed to be used together.

To access your copies, we ask you to provide some details in the form below. 

Your information will only be used to understand who is accessing the resources. If you give consent below, we may also contact you for feedback to improve the resources. If you have any concerns please contact us.

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