Better Start Package

From the 1st of July 2011 the Australian Government has put in place a new funding initiative for early intervention services for children with specific disabilities. Children with Cerebral Palsy, Down Syndrome, Fragile X syndrome, Prader Willi, Sturge Williams, Angelman, Kabuki and microcephaly will have access to funding for therapy by recognised providers (for the full list visit the Better Start Website.).

Sally-Ann Gordon has been included on the Better Start Early Intervention Service Provider Panel and will therefore be able to provide services to children under this package. To date, Sally-Ann has had many years of working with children with a variety of genetic disorders. She is a fully qualified Audiologist therefore appreciates the importance of intact hearing for the acquisition of good speech and language skills.

From July 1 2011, children who are aged under six years and eleven months have been diagnosed with one of the listed disabilities can be registered to access early intervention funding of up to $12,000 (up to a maximum of $6,000 per financial year). Funding can be used for Speech Pathology and Audiology through Sally-Ann as she is a registered provider under the Better Start package. Families will have until their child’s seventh birthday to access the early intervention funding.

The Better Start Website provides further information about this funding and about eligibility.

How to register for the Better Start Initiative
Parents or carers of eligible children will need to register their child for Better Start before they turn six in order to access the early intervention funding. The Better Start Registration and Information Service (RIS) will be operated by Carers Australia from the 1st of July 2011. To register your child for the Better Start initiative, call the Carers Australia RIS on 1800 242 636.

To register for the Better Start initiative families will need to provide:

  • the child’s Centrelink Customer Reference Number (CRN)
  • proof of the child’s age and residential address, and a
  • written conclusive diagnosis.