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NDIS brings desperate mum to breaking point, ‘I’m at my wit’s end’

Ben Fordham
Article image for NDIS brings desperate mum to breaking point, ‘I’m at my wit’s end’

UPDATE: Federal Social Services Minister Paul Fletcher has directed the National Disability Insurance Agency to address Sarah’s concerns.

A review will be conducted into Nicholas and Matthew’s NDIS plans.

A mother of two profoundly disabled children says changes to the NDIS has brought her family to breaking point.

Ben Fordham has been inundated with emails from desperate parents who are struggling to care for their kids under the current funding model.

In one case, a family was told they had to make their severely disabled children “wards of the state” for their funding to continue.

Sarah Threlfo is a mother of twin 12-year-old boys, Nicholas and Matthew, who both suffer from cerebral palsy and are eligible for the NDIS.

But under the new funding model, Sarah says her family is worse off and now she’s at her “wit’s end”.

“When something happens and you can’t get a way out of it, you’ve just got to keep on going,” Sarah tells Ben Fordham.

“I’m exhausted from it… the paperwork, the meetings, the phone calls that don’t get returned. It just goes on and on.”

She says under the old NDIS model, her family would have access to four weeks of “respite packages”. Now, they get just three days.

But it gets worse. Last month, an occupational therapist charged her over $700 for a report she still hasn’t received.

Ben has vowed to take up the issue with the appropriate ministers, assuring Sarah they won’t be letting this go.

Click PLAY below to hear the full interview with Sarah Threlfo

After hearing Sarah’s story, listener Diane called in to share her experience with the NDIS.

Diane has four disabled children, two of whom have autism.

Her eight-year-old son has a rare genetic disorder, is fed through a tube and has “high-intensity needs”.

She tells Ben her family has been greatly impacted by changes to the NDIS.

“Under the old system, my children were entitled to all of their therapies,” she says.

Click PLAY below to hear caller Diane’s heartbreaking story

Ben Fordham