Autism Queensland is a community based organisation dedicated to creating a life of participation, opportunity and choice for people living with ASD.

Autism Queensland Mackay prepares for the introduction of the NDIS

4th October, 2016


Autism Queensland Mackay is offering new services and support ahead of the start of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) in the Mackay and Whitsundays region in November 2016. 

Autism Queensland Manager – Regional Services and Mackay Team Leader Ann-Marie Watson said Mackay will be increasing services to children over the age of seven years, as well as continuing to provide early intervention services.

“With the start of the NDIS, children aged seven years and onwards will have now have access to funding,” she said.

“Mackay will be offering therapy services tailored specifically for individual support needs for children of all ages, as well as small group services ranging from social skills, play, anxiety, feeding and behaviour, to occupational therapy and speech therapy.

“All our allied health professionals are registered with Medicare, which means families can access Medicare rebates, where eligible, for some of the services we offer.”

Ann-Marie said Mackay was also the first Autism Queensland centre to start delivering Early Start Denver Model (ESDM) intervention and therapy “with outstanding results”.

“ESDM is a relationship-based intervention that involves the parents and families,” she said.

“The strategies can be applied to everyday activities, such as when children are playing, having their meals, getting dressed, and interacting with other people.

“Parental involvement is a crucial part of the program so we’re providing them with useful tips and hands-on strategies that integrate smoothly into daily activities and play.”

Mackay parent LaVonne Palmer said three year old daughter Graci “is doing really well since starting ESDM.”

“She couldn’t talk before we got here and now she’s singing ‘Row Row Row Your Boat’. She follows instructions and is generally more well behaved and using more words.

“Her dad (Frank) has noticed that she greets him when he comes home whereas before, she went out of her way to avoid him. We’ve seen an overall improvement in behaviour.”

 Ann-Marie said Autism Queensland could help Mackay client families if they had any questions or concerns about the NDIS, or if they wanted to do an NDIS pre-planning meeting.

“Families are being contacted by the NDIA and are being asked to complete an Access Request – Support Evidence Form ahead of the NDIS rollout in November.

“Families will need to provide a copy of their child’s diagnosis and the support needs that they require in order to get an NDIS plan and support funding,” she said

Autism Queensland is registered with the NDIS to provide a range to assistance, therapy and support to individual participants.

For more information about accessing an Autism Queensland service under the NDIS email or call 07 4841 8300.