Council on the Ageing (COTA) Queensland conducted a detailed situation
analysis late 2018, examining consumers’ experiences of the disability
reforms and their perspectives. COTA Queensland’s focus is the impact of
the disability reforms on people navigating their care and support options
as they age. A literature review, interviews, and monitoring of community
platforms and service provider forums informed the work. This position
paper is based on the outcomes of that analysis.
The paper commences with the consumer journey, outlining the various
stages a person moves through in order to access support. There have been
a number of positive outcomes as a result of the disability reforms, however
it is noted these benefits are experienced only by those consumers who
successfully navigate access to the new systems.
This paper reports on issues of concern from the perspective of consumers
who may be missing out on accessing appropriate support, and are
feeling fearful, overwhelmed or additionally vulnerable as a result of their
experience with the system or systems during this transition period. It also
outlines priority qualities that enable consumers and strengthen support,
as identified in the literature.
The paper concludes with an overview of the unanticipated issues,
unforeseen complications and unexpected consequences from the
reforms, and recommendations. In particular, COTA Queensland urges the
Queensland Government to consider the following key recommendations,
to ensure those most at risk of falling through the gaps during these once
in a generation reforms, have fundamental supports needed to live their
day to day life safely and with dignity.