Disability services independent review released

  • Tony Ryall

Health Minister Tony Ryall has welcomed the release of the independent review into residential disability providers’ performance and monitoring.

The review was overseen by an independent review panel chaired by consumer advocate David Russell. Disability Persons Assembly president Beverly Grammer, and management consultant Karen Van Eden were also on the panel.

Mr Ryall called for the independent review following concerns raised this year about some residential disability providers.

“We have accepted all 36 recommendations in the review,” says Mr Ryall.

“Some of the recommendations, such as improving the management of complaints, publishing provider audit reports online and increasing the time contract relationship managers spend visiting providers, will be implemented quickly. The Ministry is working on these changes now.

“Other recommendations, like bringing together the paper-based provider information into a single electronic management system, will take time to develop and introduce.

“These recommendations build on the positive improvements that have been made over the past few years to improve disability services.

“For example, in 2011 we introduced a new funding model which gives disabled people more say in the care they receive. So far, 1800 disabled people are using individualised funding and making choices about who they want supporting them and when and how they want those supports delivered,” says Mr Ryall.

A copy of the review is available on the Ministry of Health website www.health.govt.nz/publication/review-disability-support-services

Mr Ryall thanked Mr Russell, Miss Grammer, and Ms Van Eden for their hard work undertaking this independent review.