There is a pink and blue circle with graphics of people inside them and then the QDN logo, Queenslanders with Disability Network, Nothing About us Without us. COVID-19 Update. There are four circles with graphics inside of hand sanitiser, a mask, two people social distancing and a vaccine.

QDN Member - COVID-19 Update

January Week 4

National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) participants can now use plan funds to claim for rapid antigen tests (RATs)

Minister for the NDIS, Senator the Honourable Linda Reynolds CSC, announced on 24 January 2022, that eligible NDIS participants can now use core funding from their NDIS plans to buy rapid antigen tests (RATs).

Participants do not need to request a plan review to buy RATs where they are needed to be able to access their reasonable and necessary supports. People can also purchase RATs for support workers so they can continue to safely deliver support.

More information is available here

QDN acknowledges that this approach will mean that people have to use their core supports that is funded for other essential supports and some people do not have core funding in their plans. Whilst this interim measure is welcomed to assist, QDN will continue to advocate with the NDIA around how people’s plans can be adjusted in future to reflect the need for RAT purchases and core funding that they have had to use.

Critically essential workers

The Queensland Government announced on 22 January that disability support workers to be included as critically essential workers. Disability care has been included as a critical industry and workers as critically essential roles. There are guidelines in place about how and when this can be used in critical situations where people have no other options for support for essential care and support.

This does not apply to workers who have COVID-19 – if they have COVID-19, workers need to isolate for 7 days.

Full information is available here

Vaccination and boosters

It is vital that people with disability who can get vaccinated against COVID-19 get the first two doses if they haven’t already, and also that people get their booster shots.

The Commonwealth Government will be delivering boosters on site at disability accommodation services in the same way as the first two vaccination doses, and will be in touch with disability providers to arrange this.

You can search for vaccination and booster appointments on or here – otherwise you can call the Queensland Health COVID-19 hotline on 134 268.

The Queensland Government is reaching out to NDIS participants who haven’t received their vaccination at this time to provide assistance and support if needed.

QDN is advocating for priority pathways for people with disability to access boosters. If people are experiencing challenges with accessing boosters and need in-reach to their homes, please contact QDN.

COVID-19 testing

It is currently very difficult to access RATs as there is a widespread shortage. QDN is advocating strongly for people with disability to have priority access to RATs as soon as they become available, given the major impact on people with disability, families and staffing of disability workers.

Priority pathways have also been requested to allow people with disability to access PCR testing without the need to spend hours in queues. We will continue to provide information as soon as additional options become available.

Make a plan

We continue to encourage people to make a plan in case of illness or the need to go to hospital, and consider the supports you might need. Make sure you have a supply of Panadol and your regular medications, along with groceries to last you a week if possible.

You can find QDN’s Emergency Planning Tool here and Easy Read version here.

What to do if you get COVID-19

There is information on the Queensland Health site here about looking after your symptoms if you are diagnosed with COVID-19, the steps you need to take, and when to get medical help.

Workforce and staffing supplys

The NDIA has established a single national peer workforce support service to NDIS providers experiencing, or at risk of, significant workforce disruptions.

    • Registered providers should notify the NDIS Commission of any critical workforce disruptions. The support service will contact impacted providers directly.
    • Unregistered providers should email the NDIA to access workforce support.