What is supported independent living?

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Supported independent living (SIL) is a NDIS funded support service designed to help you live in your home. The aim of supported independent living is to provide assistance with daily life for those living with a disability to help them live independently. Supported independent living is for those with a disability who may have very high support needs, and require some level of constant help at home. With supported independent living, you can access a significant amount of help everyday, 7 days a week (including overnight support). Examples of supports included in SIL are support with supervision, safety and security, assistance with personal care tasks, assistance with capacity building tasks such as meal prep, cooking and cleaning, and support for medical appointments.

This article will act as a guide to supported independent living:

  • What is a SIL home?
  • What is the different between SIL and ILO?
  • Supported independent living funding
  • Is this service in my NDIS plan?

What is a SIL home?

Support Independent Living (SIL) is shared specialist disability accommodation (SDA) for NDIS participants with 24-hour support. SIL provides services for people who are disabled and need support with everyday life activities. Specialist disability accommodation (SDA) are purpose-built dwellings designed to maximise accessibility and livability.

The main purpose of SDA is to minimise the amount of support someone may require at home from family or a support coordinator. To be eligible for SDA, participants must have an extreme functional impairment or very high support needs, and meet the specialist disability accommodation needs requirement and the NDIS funding criteria.

The NDIS separates a support system in two parts: the provider of SIL from the provider of SSA. Having a separate support or accommodation provider allows participants the flexibility to change their provider without having to change another provider in a particular situation. Participants who don’t have SDA in their plan can still access SIL support for their family and other individuals if the family is in a private home. A NDIS planner must determine whether an NDIS participant has SDA or SIL.

What is the difference between SIL and ILO?

Individual living options (ILO) is an alternative to supported independent living (SIL). ILO is a package of supports that lets you choose where and how you live in the way that best suits your circumstance. Using ILO funding, you can explore different ways to live such as with family, friends or a host, and and design a support package to help you live the life that you choose. The NDIS will consider your preferences, strengths, support needs, and informal and formal networks when determining the right ILO funding for you.

Both supported independent living (SIL) and individual living options (ILO) are designed to provide the best individualised care for each person. When it comes to distinguishing the difference between SIL and ILO, there are two key contrasts that should be taken into consideration when determining which type of support is right for you.

Current living situation

Your current living situation and what will best suit you in the future can be an important factor to consider when choosing between SIL and ILO funding. Often under SIL, you must move from your current living arrangement into a shared home. This can sometimes mean changing suburbs. If your current living situation is working for you, and you are just seeking additional support in your own home, ILO may be a more suitable option.

Accommodation that aligns with your goals

Your short-term and long-term goals will impact the suitability of SIL and ILO services. Both supports can benefit those looking to lead a more independent lifestyle, however each service offers a different level of support. Whilst living in SIL, you have around the clock support of workers and fellow residents. This 24/7 support and care may be better suited to an individual with higher needs and restricted abilities. On the other hand, ILO is for those comfortable with intermittent additional support, rather than constant care

Supported independent living funding

If you have SIL included as part of your NDIS plan, you will receive funding for it under the category Assistance with Daily Life. The majority of people who receive SIL funding live in a shared home or supported accommodation setting, or have SDA funding. SIL funding is managed by the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA). The NDIA is responsible for ensuring your SIL funds are paid directly to your SIL service provider. The NDIA will also identify a price for the support services to be delivered as part of your NDIS plan.

There are three different levels of SIL funded support. These are categorised by low, standard, and high needs.

Lower Needs

This provides participants with regular supervision of living arrangements, including occasional to intermittent prompting to undertake household tasks and/or self-care activities.

Standard Needs

This provides participants with 24/7 support which includes active assistance or supervision of most daily tasks, sleepovers, and the ability to spend some time with family without paid support. If occasional challenging behaviours are exhibited, there is a positive behaviour support plan in place which has been demonstrated to effectively support the resident within the available support.

Higher Needs

This provides support to participants through 24/7 active and continuous assistance with all daily tasks, active overnight support, managing challenging behaviours that require intensive positive behaviour support, and active management of complex medical needs such as ventilation or seizure activity.

Is this service in my NDIS plan?

SIL services can be included in your NDIS plan once your application has been approved.

If you and your planner determine SIL to be suitable for you, you can then find an SIL provider to begin the funding process. Your support coordinator can assist you in finding an SIL provider, as well as community, public, or private housing.

You must clearly set out your accommodation goals with your provider, and the support you require for daily tasks in order to live independently. You may chat to multiple providers before finding one that suits you, and can help you achieve your goals.

Your chosen provider will work with you to establish a roster of care. The roster of care will be based on your support needs and include the support needs of everyone living in the house, and which support workers will help you and at what times.

The NDIS will consider what is reasonable and necessary support funding according to your roster of care. Once the roster of care is approved, SIL funding will be included in your NDIS plan.

It is important to note that in addition to your roster of care, additional information such as individual circumstance, age, living skills, and availability of alternative options will also impact your ability to be accepted for SIL services funding.

Need help with accessing disability and support services?

At AHP Disability and Home Care, our highly qualified staff are well-equipped to assist with any and all of your needs.

Contact our team on 1800 247 342, should you require assistance.

NDIS Disability Provider

Level 9
288 Forest Road
Hurstville NSW 2220.

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