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NDIS Worker Screening and Risk Assessed Roles

NDIS Practice Standard 1: Rights and Responsibilities #

1.0 Purpose #

Registered NDIS providers must ensure that key personnel and other workers in certain types of roles have appropriate worker screening clearances that meet the requirements of the NDIS Practice Standards and Quality Indicators. Appropriate clearances ensure that the key personnel and employees in risk assessed roles do not pose an unacceptable risk to the safety and wellbeing of our NDIS participants. Compliance with the NDIS Practice Standards and Quality Indicators 2021 is a condition of registration for all registered NDIS providers.

The risk assessed role is linked to the NDIS requirements. All roles identified as risk assessed by ISeekSupport must meet all NDIS worker screening requirements.

2.0 Scope #

The manager must identify and record information regarding each role in the organisation to determine all risk assessed roles within manager. The manager determines and identifies all employees who meet the criteria of performing in risk assessed roles.

Employees performing within a role that has been determined as a risk-assessed role require NDIS Worker Screening. It is the responsibility of the employee to apply to the state Worker Screening Unit (WSU), provide the relevant application information and pay the fee.

It is then the responsibility of the manager to verify all risk-assessed roles and maintain appropriate records using the Contractor Risk Assessed Check Form, Risk Assessed Role Register and the Risk-Assessed Role – Employee Register.

3.0 Definitions #

A risk assessed role #

A key personnel role (person or an entity) as defined in s11A of the National Disability Insurance Scheme Act 2013 (e.g. a manager or a Board Member) as:

  • A role for which the regular duties are likely to require ‘more than incidental contact with people with disability, which includes:
  1. Physically touching a participant
  2. Building a rapport with a participant as an integral and ordinary part of the performance of normal duties
  3. Contact multiple participants as part of the direct delivery of a specialist disability support or service or in a specialist disability accommodation setting.

Contractor #

If the NDIS provider engages another organisation or individual to perform work on their premises (or otherwise) as part of their support and services provision. The organisation or individual is considered a contractor engaged by the registered NDIS provider.

Exceptions/exemptions #

A registered NDIS provider may engage a person in a risk-assessed role, who does not have an NDIS Worker Screening clearance, only if the registered NDIS provider is subject to the transitional and unique arrangements and the registered NDIS provider is complying with those arrangements.

A registered NDIS provider can also allow secondary school students on a formal work experience placement to engage in risk assessed roles without having an NDIS Worker Screening clearance or an acceptable check under the transitional and special arrangements, provided the students are directly supervised by another worker who has an NDIS Worker Screening clearance or acceptable check under the transitional and special arrangements.

Worker Screening Check #

The WSC is an assessment of whether a person who works, or seeks to work, with participants poses a risk.

The worker screening check assessment determines whether a person is cleared or excluded from working in specific roles with participants.

Worker Screening Unit (WSU) #

The Worker Screening Unit conducts the NDIS Worker Screening Check in the state or territory where a person applies.

The Worker Screening Unit also decides whether a person is cleared or excluded.

Registered NDIS providers are required to ensure that they only engage workers who have been cleared in specific roles, called risk assessed roles.

National NDIS Worker Screening Database

The National NDIS Worker Screening Database:

  • Holds a register of cleared and excluded workers
  • Supports ongoing national monitoring of the criminal history records of workers with NDIS Worker Screening clearances
  • Means NDIS providers across the country can use a single online portal to verify their workers’ Worker Screening Check applications and review the NDIS Worker Screening clearances of prospective workers, without needing to contact individual state and territory Worker Screening Units
  • Helps NDIS providers with record-keeping requirements.

4.0 Policy #

As a registered NDIS provider, ISeekSupport will comply with the requirements relating to worker screening, as per the National Disability Insurance Scheme (Practice Standards – Worker Screening) Rules 2018. It is the responsibility of the manager to verify that all workers performing in a risk-assessed role have applied for and hold the appropriate worker screening clearances (as determined by the Worker Screening Unit) by reviewing the details recorded in the National Worker Screening Database (NWSD). The manager or an authorised delegate will manage, record and verify worker screening.

The manager will identify which roles are risk assessed roles and ensure all workers in the roles have an NDIS Worker Screening Check or an acceptable check under the transitional and unique arrangements. The following table lists the NDIS registration groups that may have risk assessed roles.

Table 1. Supports and services that may have risk assessed roles as described by the NDIS

Descriptor

  • Assistance to access and maintain employment or higher education
  • High intensity daily personal activities
  • Assistance in coordinating or managing life stages, transitions and supports
  • Assistance with daily personal activities
  • Assistance with travel/transport arrangements, but only if the services are concerning specialised transport to school/educational facility/employment/community (does not include public services, i.e. taxi, bus and train)
  • Specialist positive behaviour support
  • Community nursing care
  • Assistance with daily life tasks in a group or shared living arrangement
  • Innovative community participation
  • Development of daily living and life skills
  • Early intervention supports for early childhood
  • Specialised hearing services
  • Interpreting and translating
  • Participation in community, social and civic activities
  • Exercise physiology and personal training
  • Management of funding for supports in participant plans
  • Therapeutic supports
  • Specialised driver training
  • Specialised support coordination
  • Specialised supported employment
  • Hearing services
  • Customised prosthetics
  • Group and centre-based activities

Only employees who work in risk assessed roles require worker screening clearances. iSeekSupport is not required to verify that employees, who do not work in risk assessed roles, have an NDIS worker screening clearance or an acceptable check under the transitional and unique arrangements.

However, iSeekSupport or a self-managed participant may (as a safety measure) require staff to undergo an NDIS worker screening clearance or have an acceptable check under the transitional and special arrangements before engaging them for a role that is not a risk assessed role.

5.0 Procedure #

5.1 Risk assessed role #

The manager will determine whether the regular duties of a role involve more than incidental contact with a participant; this may include:

  • Physical contact
  • Face-to-face contact
  • Oral communication
  • Written communication
  • Electronic communication.

The manager will undergo a review of every role within iSeekSupport and identify and record all risk assessed roles in the Risk Assessed Role Register. Staff whose role has been identified as a risk assessed role will undergo the appropriate worker screening checks. All clearance check details are recorded in the Risk Assessed Role – Employee Register.

Roles that have been determined as not risk-assessed are not required to hold worker screening clearances.

5.1.1 Documenting a risk assessed role #

The manager will complete the Risk Assessed Role Register for each risk assessed role and will document:

  • Risk assessed role tile
  • Description of the role
  • Type of risk assessed role (as contained in the NDIS (Practice Standards – Worker Screening) Rules 2018)
  • Date risk assessed role determined
  • Employees who are role assessed
  • The name and title of the person who made the assessment.

5.1.2 New reclassification of risk assessed role #

When a new risk assessed role is identified (or a current role is reclassified as a risk assessed role following a review), the Risk Assessed Role Register must be updated within 20 business days of the identification (or review) of the risk assessed role.

5.1.3 Worker risk assessed role checks #

For each employee working in a risk-assessed role, the PRACTICE MANAGER or their authorised delegate will document all relevant details in the Risk Assessed Role – Employee Register. Information documented includes:

  • The full name, date of birth and address of the employee
  • The risk assessed role or roles in which the employee engages
  • If the worker may engage in a risk-assessed role without an NDIS worker screening clearance:
  1. The basis on which they may do so (refer to sections below regarding the exemptions to the requirement for a worker to have an NDIS Worker Screening clearance)
  2. The start and end date of the period in which the exemption that allows them to work in a risk engaged role applies
  • The name of the staff member who supervises the worker during this period
  • The worker’s NDIS Worker Screening Check application reference number
  • The worker’s NDIS Worker Screening Check outcome expiry date
  • Whether the worker’s NDIS Worker Screening Check is subject to any decision which affects that ISeekSupport may not allow the worker to engage in a risk-assessed role, and the nature of any such decision (i.e. interim bar, suspension, exclusion)
  • Records relating to an interim bar, a suspension, an exclusion, or any action taken by the provider concerning these kinds of decisions concerning any worker
  • Allegations of misconduct against a worker with a check and the registered NDIS provider’s action in response to that allegation.

Table 1. Internal review process

5.1.4 Engaging contractors #

When engaging contractors, iSeekSupport will work with the contractor to ensure that any contractor workers (including individual contractors) have the required worker screening checks and clearances.

When working with contractors, the manager or their delegate will complete a Contractor Risk Assessed Check Form.

5.2 NDIS Worker Screening #

All workers employed in a risk-assessed role must apply for an NDIS Worker Screening Check with the state’s Worker Screening Unit. The Worker Screening Unit manages the application process and collects the required application fee.

The manager or a delegated staff member will access the NDIS Portal and validate the worker screening checks. The National Worker Screening Database (NWSD) will advise iSeekSupport via email of a worker’s clearance or exclusion.

The manager, in turn, will inform the staff member of the results. In the caser where NWSD advises of exclusion or provides negative advice regarding a worker, it is the manager’s responsibility to withdraw that particular worker from the risk assessed role immediately.

Diagram 2. Risk Assessed Role – NDIS Worker Screening Process

In addition to the National Police Check, some staff may require a Working with Children Check if they work with participants under 18 years.

For more information regarding worker screening, refer to Appendix 1. Worker Screening Unit and Transitional Requirements or Appendix 2. NDIS Worker Screening Application Overview.

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5.3 Risk management #

As a registered NDIS provider, iSeekSupport is required to develop, implement and maintain risk management strategies to ensure our participants’ safety. Risk management strategies for risk assessed roles will be recorded in our Risk Management Plan.

iSeekSupport’s Risk Management Plan will:

Identify the risks relating to:

  • Non-supervision of a worker during the delivery of services or supports
  • Safety of our participants
  • A participant is injured or not receiving the necessary support they need.

Outline actions to be taken by our organisation to address risks, which may include the manager:

  • Identifying if the employee has any current worker screening clearances
  • Allocating an appropriate supervisor to the employee to monitor their work until worker screening clearances are received
  • Checking references and seeking additional information about employees working a risk assessed role to confirm they understand and perform safe work practices.

5.4 Document records #

iSeekSupport will keep all documents up to date. Records will be kept for seven years from the date they were made. Records will be stored by iSeekSupport on a secure password-protected server in an organised, accessible and legible manner.

Information relating to workers engaged in a risk-assessed role will be kept in a manner easily accessible to the NDIS Commission or a quality auditor. Information will include workers engaged on any given day over the previous seven years.

iSeekSupport Policy and Procedure – Published 09.02.2022 #

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