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Will my child maintain access to a Health Care Card for life? What about other Government funded programs?

Cystic Fibrosis Queensland and Trusted Care are often asked these questions and while no two cases are the same, the following guideline has been created to help you as you navigate your way.

Health Care Cards
Children with cystic fibrosis currently have access to the healthcare card not because they have cystic fibrosis, but because they qualify for care. The Health Care Card is attached to the carer, not the child with cystic fibrosis. This means that cystic fibrosis children are no longer eligible for the card upon completion of education or turning 18 (which ever comes first) if they are no longer deemed to be under your care. If you believe that your child needs to retain their Health Care Card into adulthood, then you need to be speaking with Hospital Social Workers and your GP regarding your child’s eligibility and application as they transition from paediatrics to adults. For an adult to have access to a Health Care Card they are independently assessed, and the outcome is based on need. Visit https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/health-care-card for further information.

National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)
The NDIS is about supporting individual disability need to assist people to live a normal life. In the past, people with cystic fibrosis could only access the NDIS if they qualified through co-morbidity. Changes last year mean that the program is now more inclusive, and people are individually assessed as opposed to having to meet a set of criteria. In preparation for this change to eligibility, Cystic Fibrosis Queensland launched Trusted Care, a national NDIS social enterprise to assist people with Plan Management as well as individual Supports. Trusted Care is open to all people living with cystic fibrosis as well as anyone else eligible for the NDIS, no matter where they reside. All profits generated by Trusted Care are returned to our members through increased support and service programs. Currently, Trusted Care provides services for people aged seven years and up. Visit NDIS for further information.

Early Childcare Education and Care (ECEC) In-Home Care
Trusted Care will be expanding services in the second half of this year to include support for our littlest members. In-Home Care is funding for eligible families:

  1. You live in a remote or rural area.
  2. You work non-standard hours.
  3. Your family is experiencing complex or challenging need

Targeted to meet the needs of families with children aged 0 – 5 years, the program will seek to place professional childcare workers with our most in need families. This program will be particularly suited to our regional, rural, and remote members who live some distance from health and education facilities.

National Diabetes Support Scheme (NDSS)
The National Diabetes Services Scheme (NDSS) is an initiative of the Australian Government that commenced in 1987 and is administered by Diabetes Australia. The NDSS aims to enhance the capacity of people with diabetes to:

  • understand and self-manage their life with diabetes.
  • access services, support, and subsidised diabetes products.
  • From March 1, 2019, eligibility for fully subsidised continuous glucose monitoring device was expanded under the National Diabetes Services Scheme to include:
    • women with type 1 diabetes who are pregnant, breastfeeding or actively planning pregnancy
    • people with type 1 diabetes aged 21 years or older who have concessional status, and who have a high clinical need such as experiencing recurrent severe hypoglycaemic events
    • children and young people with conditions like type 1 diabetes who require insulin. This includes a range of conditions such as cystic fibrosis related diabetes or neonatal diabetes (often referred to as other diabetes).

Where to next?
If you are a Cystic Fibrosis Queensland financial member and seeking further information about how to apply for a Health Care Card, the NDIS and the NDSS, in the first instance, reach out to Vicki Head of Membership and Services.

If you already qualify for the NDIS and would like to speak with Trusted Care about Plan Management and Supports, reach out to Ben Head of Business Development, Trusted Care.

If you are interested to learn more about the ECEC program, register your interest with our General Manager.