NDIS funding about-turn has disability groups worried

Plans for a hike in the Medicare levy have been scrapped

A government backflip on a plan to fund the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) through an increased Medicare levy has disability groups concerned about long-term funding of the scheme.

Treasurer Scott Morrison has confirmed that the plan for a 0.5% hike in the Medicare levy from next year has been scrapped. The scheme will instead be fully funded through better-than-expected tax revenue.

AMA president Michael Gannon says he is “agnostic” about where the money comes from, so long as the scheme is secure, but disability groups are worried about long-term NDIS funding.

Billed as a once-in-many-generations reform, the scheme is expected to support 475,000 people at an annual cost of $22 billion when it becomes fully operational next year.

“As long as this means the NDIS has robust and sustainable funding, we are agnostic about where that money comes from," Dr Gannon told ABC