Minister: People with disability deserve continued affordable access to dietitians

Dietitians Australia is calling on the Minister for the NDIS, the Hon Bill Shorten MP and the NDIA to ensure NDIS pricing mechanisms don’t limit people with disability from receiving the allied health care they need.

“Dietitians Australia and accredited practising dietitians understand there is a delicate balance needed to support the sustainability of the NDIS, and we vehemently condemn instances of unfair use of participant funding across the scheme,” Dietitians Australia CEO Robert Hunt said.

“But efforts to make the NDIS pricing system more sustainable, must not put participants at risk of missing out on critical allied health therapy supports, including dietetic services.

“Particularly as there is minimal funding for therapy supports from allied health professionals including dietitians within mainstream services including Medicare,” Mr Hunt said.

“We want to see people with a disability in this country empowered to access the therapy supports they need to maintain their quality of life.

“We must also prioritise the nutrition rights of all people.

“Dietitians play a valuable role in working with people with disability who need support with their food, fluid, and nutritional needs, to ensure they achieve the best possible health and wellbeing outcomes.

“It is disappointing the Government has not heeded the calls from our profession, and the wider allied health profession to ensure pricing limits for therapy supports are indexed in line with inflation,” Mr Hunt said.

“We know from what we hear from dietitians working in disability and alliances across the allied health sector, that many NDIS participants currently have restricted access to the full range of therapy supports they need to maintain their health and wellbeing.

“We also need to ensure we retain allied health workers within the disability sector and ensure they are adequately remunerated for the critical work they do.

“We’ve invested significantly in upskilling dietitians to work with people with disability through our capacity building initiative – Capacity Building for Dietitians in Disability, and we’re actively working to ensure the dietetic workforce is well equipped to support Australians with disability in the future.

“Allied health therapy supports, including dietetic services must be safeguarded not compromised.”

/Public Release. View in full here.