How Software Can Help Streamline the NDIS Incident Reporting Process

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The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) plays a vital role in delivering comprehensive care and support to individuals with disabilities throughout Australia. In providing care to NDIS Participants, unexpected situations may arise, requiring reporting to the Commission. This reporting is essential to enhance transparency and facilitate a more informed and responsive approach to service delivery, ultimately improving the overall quality of NDIS Care.

What is an NDIS Incident?

An NDIS Incident refers to an action, occurrence, or alleged situation during NDIS Care Provision that pertains to the demise, serious injury, abuse, or neglect of a person with a disability, thereby posing potential harm to the health and safety of the NDIS Participant. Additionally, it encompasses actions by the Participants that may harm another individual. 

Notification of these NDIS Incidents, including those of alleged nature, is directed to the NDIS Commission. This facilitates the undertaking of further specified remedial measures through comprehensive investigations.

What are the types of NDIS Incident Reports?

In adherence to regulatory protocols, particular incidents require reporting to the NDIS Commission, categorically referred to as reportable incidents. These occurrences include the death, severe injury, abuse, or neglect of a person with a disability, as well as instances involving the unauthorised application of restrictive practices.

What can be reported as an NDIS Incident Specifically?

The specific act or event that must have occurred or be alleged to have occurred in connection with the provision of support or services to NDIS Participant is as follows:

  1. The demise of the NDIS Participant
  2. Severe injury sustained by NDIS Participant
  3. Abuse or neglect of the NDIS Participant
  4. Inappropriate sexual or physical interaction with or an assault towards the NDIS Participant 
  5. Sexual misconduct perpetrated towards, in the presence of, or preparation of the NDIS Participant to be involved in a sexual act
  6. Implementation of a restrictive practice concerning the Participant, wherein the usage deviates from the authorisation (regardless of its description) of a state or territory in relation to the individual. This includes situations where the use aligns with the authorisation but diverges from a behaviour support plan formulated for the NDIS Participant.


When is an NDIS Incident Report created?

In line with the NDIS commitment, any incident deemed reportable must adhere to a specific timeline. This involves promptly notifying the NDIS Commission within the timeframe integral to maintaining a proactive approach upholding transparency and accountability in addressing incidents within the NDIS scheme.

Reportable incidents must be:

  • Notified to the Commission within 24 hours
  • Have a follow-up report made within five business days
Reportable IncidentRequired Timeframe
Death of a person with a disability24 hours
Serious injury of a person with a disability24 hours
Abuse or neglect of a person with a disability24 hours
Unlawful sexual or physical contact with, or assault of, a person with a disability24 hours
Sexual misconduct committed against, or in the presence of, a person with a disability, including grooming of the person for sexual activity24 hours
The use of restrictive practice in relation to a person with a disability if the use is not in accordance with a required state or territory authorisation and/or not in accordance with a behaviour support plan.Five business days

An exemption from the standard reporting timeline must be followed when notifying the NDIS Commission of the unapproved use of a restrictive practice or one not following a behaviour support plan. The Provider should communicate the incident to the NDIS Commission within five business days of becoming aware. However, should the incident harm the Participant, expedited reporting is mandated within 24 hours.

In all cases, NDIS Incident reports should be supplied with specific information about the incident and any steps already taken in response. For more comprehensive guidance, kindly refer to the Information Requirements for Reportable Incident Notification factsheet on the NDIS official website.

Importance of NDIS Incident Reporting

Mandatory notification is a legal obligation and plays a huge part as a policy specified by the National Disability Insurance Scheme Act 2013, which serves as a crucial measure to mitigate instances and suspected instances of abuse and neglect within disability care.

Reporting is necessary, even in cases where the care Provider has promptly addressed the incidents through the incident management system. Failure to report within the timeframes constitutes a violation of the NDIS Act and may result in the issuance of infringement notices or other compliance actions.

Where is the NDIS Incident reported to?

The NDIS Commission is in charge of overseeing and regulating NDIS Incidents. When an incident is reported, the NDIS Commission investigates it thoroughly. This means looking into all the details to determine what happened and why. 

Upon receiving a reportable incident report, the NDIS Commission can initiate various actions, including facilitating remedial measures, conducting an internal investigation, or enlisting an independent expert to investigate and provide a comprehensive report. 

Suppose a reportable incident brings to light a compliance concern. In that case, the Commission is empowered to take regulatory action such as independent investigation, implementing enforcement, issuing an infringement or compliance notice or seeking judicial intervention to impose a civil penalty for violating the NDIS Act.

Ultimately, the goal is to hold responsible parties accountable and take steps to stop similar incidents from happening again.

All incidents, whether reportable to the NDIS Commission or not, must be documented and handled within the incident management system of the registered NDIS Provider. In some instances, incidents may require reporting to various authorities, such as the police, child safety authorities, or the relevant State or Territory body. A registered NDIS Provider must have a well-documented reporting and management process within their incident management system to ensure all incidents are logged and recorded. 

Who creates the NDIS Incident Report?

As registered partners of the Scheme, NDIS Providers must notify the Commission of all reportable incidents, including alleged occurrences, associated with providing care, support, or services to NDIS Participants. Compliance with the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Rules concerning reporting such incidents is a requirement for registration and partnership with the Commission.

NDIS Providers must establish an internal incident management system within their introduced platform to systematically record responses to reportable incidents as they arise. Maintaining a well-documented and coherent record of an NDIS Incident not only assists future care Providers in understanding specific occurrences but also plays a crucial role in facilitating information requests from other authorities while protecting the company during audits and investigations. These authorities may include consulting healthcare professionals, overseeing teachers, or investigating police officers, contributing significantly to a comprehensive understanding of the incident.

Where can an NDIS Incident be reported from?

NDIS Providers must adhere to quality and safeguard requirements, ensuring compliance with their responsibilities through education and training. This includes optimising the NDIS Commission Portal’s My Reportable Incidents page and proficiently utilising the internal incident management system.

When reporting a reportable incident to the Commission, the care Provider is required to adhere to established procedures and complete the necessary information outlined on the ‘My Reportable Incidents’ page, which may include, but is not limited to:

  • Name of the individuals involved in the NDIS Incident.
  • A detailed account of the Reportable Incident (nature of injuries sustained, time, date, and place) as it allegedly has occurred.
  • The impact or the harm caused to the NDIS Participant in a detailed report, except the demise of the person, in which case the information is not required.
  • Actions accomplished by the Provider in relation to the Incident.


Given the anticipation for the rarity of the NDIS Incident report, the likelihood that staff members might forget what details to include in the report is probable. Thus, securing a template might help Support Workers in organising the report systematically. 

Furthermore, in alignment with the designated key personnel roles specified in the registration to NDIS, the ‘My Reportable Incidents’ page consists of two distinct user roles:

  1. Authorised Reportable Incidents Approver
  2. Authorised Reportable Incidents Notifier


Both roles are granted access to and completion of the online notification forms; however, only the authorised ‘Approver’ can submit the form.

CareMaster NDIS Software offers an Internal Incident Management System that provides Administrators with tools and features to enhance the processes. The system streamlines the supervision of incident reports, including NDIS reportable incidents and those geared towards improving service provision. 

The CareMaster Administrator licence offers the functionality to create essential alerts and reminders, document incidents, and proficiently distribute crucial information and forms, all while prioritising NDIS compliance.

The CareMaster NDIS Software has tools that classify and filter incidents according to Participants, vehicles, and properties, contributing to organisational efficiency and the capacity to differentiate and sort individual incidents systematically.

The functionality of auto-complete fields and pre-loaded lists for staff, vehicles, and properties guarantees accurate data input. This not only reinforces information precision but also optimises record tracking, facilitating quick access and retrieval of items, thereby minimising time and effort in managing incident records.

Within the CareMaster Incident Management System, essential fields are provided for Incident Description, Date and Time, Costs incurred, Witnesses, and Actions taken. Additionally, the system allows for file attachments, constituting key elements that enhance the thoroughness of incident reports. This functionality assists in prioritising recorded incidents by evaluating their significance and importance in the context of care provision.

CareMaster integrates valuable functionalities, including tagging, for advanced organisation of incident records according to report status—whether it is read-only, internal-only, or a reportable incident. This feature assists administrators in ensuring adherence to NDIS guidelines and streamlines the process of accurate analysis and reporting. The tagging system for active and resolved incidents effectively distinguishes ongoing from resolved issues, ensuring a consistent and reliable information foundation for subsequent analysis, endorsement, and recommendations and facilitating efficient follow-up procedures.

How Can We Create Safer Care Environments?

Prioritising the immediate needs and well-being of individuals affected by an incident is of utmost importance. Following incident resolution, it is crucial to address broader implications by fostering a physically and psychologically safe organisational culture. This involves ensuring a deep understanding of the organisation’s Code of Conduct, NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission guidelines, and Occupational Health and Safety policies.

Educational efforts should be directed towards leaders to create a psychologically safe environment where concerns are actively heard. Implementing systems like CareMaster allows continuous listening and reporting, particularly in dispersed work environments. Post-incident analysis with data analytics, thorough investigations, staff training, and policy reviews help identify the root causes of NDIS Incidents, and the implementation of preventive measures advances the NDIS Care system.