WHY CHOOSE GRS

Let's meet Greg, and compare his care received through GRS and with other providers.

 

Greg is 53 years old and is paraplegic due to a spinal card  injury from a car accident 20 years ago. Despite his disability Greg has always remained very independent - he is married with 2 grown up children, works full time as an IT specialist, swims daily and drives a modified car.

Over the past year Greg as developed increasing shoulder and back pain which is now limiting his ability to propel and move in/out of his manual wheelchair. Greg's wife Cindy usually helps Greg with his transfers but she is also starting to get a sore back. Due to his pain levels Greg has started to work from home and rarely goes out. Greg also has given up swimming as he is no longer able to safely get in and out of the swimming pool. These reductions in activity levels have made Greg put on a significant amount of weight, further worsening his pain and impeding mobility. 

Greg's wife is concerned that Greg is feeling depressed about his physical decline and reports that he is beginning to withdraw from social activities as he is embarrassed about needing help to push his wheelchair when he is out. 

Greg and his wife meets with an NDIA agent to develop his NDIS plan. Greg's goals are to maintain independent functional mobility, return to swimming, reduce weight and re-engage in social activities. 

Greg’s plan identified that he would benefit from physiotherapy, dietary support and counselling. He is also provided with funding for a new wheelchair, and recommended to seek occupational therapy input to source and purchase this.

Greg has $35,000 approved in his 12 month NDIS budget to action the above plan. Let's compare ​his therapy costs and outcomes achieved with GRS against that with other providers.

 

With GRS

Service Coordination: $440

(2 x $120/hr session, 2 x $100/hr Skype consultation)

Greg engages GRS and his service coordinator assists with his referrals to  physical and occupational therapies, dietitian and social work. He sets independent therapy goals with each therapist he sees and also discusses his overall goals as per his NDIS plan with his service coordinator. The GRS team collaboratively manage his care and over 12 months they achieved the following:

Physiotherapy (PT): $8,960

(28 x $120/hr PT, 80 x $70/hr therapy trainee)

Greg was started on a reconditioning and strengthening programme for his back and arms. He initially received 2x/week sessions with a therapy assistant (TA) and weekly reviews with his physiotherapist; this was gradually reduced to weekly sessions with the TA and monthly PT reviews as Greg's pain decreased and strength improved.

After 6 months Greg was independent with all his transfers and was  able to tolerate pushing his manual wheelchair on level surfaces with significantly less pain. Greg achieved his goal of independently returning to swimming after 10 months of therapy. 

Greg's physiotherapist was concerned about long term shoulder joint protection for Greg and recommended an occupational therapy home assessment to be completed.

Occupational Therapy (OT): $1,500

(10 x $120/hr OT, 3 x $100/hr Skype consultation)

An OT home assessment was completed with the aim of increasing the ease of access in/out of the home as well as reduce frequency of transfers for Greg to reduce strain to his upper limbs.

Options for a new wheelchair were discussed with input from Greg's physiotherapist. It was suggested that Greg should consider an electric wheelchair for outdoor use in view of his pain levels and to protect his joints from further wear. Together with the OT Greg was fitted for a new electric wheelchair which suited his current lifestyle needs. 

Installation of access ramp - $350

Mobile shower commode - $900

Reduction of bed height - $150

Electric wheelchair - $13,000

Dietitian: $600

(6 x $100/hr Skype consultation)

Greg received dietary advice and ongoing nutritional support with an accredited dietitian via Skype consultation. With information provided by the physiotherapist in regards to his exercise programme, the dietitian was able to recommend a dietary plan that helped Greg build up muscle mass whilst facilitating gradual weight loss.

At his final review with the dietitian, Greg had returned to his previous weight with improvements to his body fat ratio and his BMI was within a healthy range. 

Counselling with a Social Worker: $320

(1x $120/hr sessions, 2x $100/hr Skype consultation)

Greg received supportive counselling with an accredited social worker who also provided information and education to Greg's wife on strategies to encourage positive thinking and behaviour. 

Evaluation

Total therapy hours: 130

Total cost of care: $26,220 (including electric wheelchair, wheeled shower commode and home modifications)

When Greg met his service coordinator 10 months after working with the GRS team, it was identified that he will have close to $9,000 in surplus of the funds he was allocated through NDIS. Greg decides to contact his occupational therapist to discuss options for installation of a pool lift.

 

With Other Providers

Client self managed care

Greg researches on the NDIS website and spends 2 weeks contacting various registered providers to seek physiotherapy, occupational therapy, dietitian and counselling services. During each therapist's initial session, Greg finds himself having to repeat his story and needs. He also has to be proactive with updating them about his progress with other therapies as there is limited communication between each provider. His wife gets frustrated at times with having to organise all of Greg's appointments and sometimes wonders if Greg could have done better with more coordinated care. 

Greg receives comparable therapy services and hours with each clinician, however, he is charged at NDIS recommended therapy rates.

Physiotherapy (PT): $18,200

(91 x $200/hr)

Greg initially saw his physiotherapist for twice per week sessions over 9 months. This was later reduced to once a week as Greg's wife was concerned that his allocated funds would not be able to cover ongoing the cost of therapy. 

Occupational Therapy (OT): $2,000

(10 x $200/hr)

Greg is seen by an occupational therapist for wheelchair prescription as was requested. Options for a new manual wheelchair as well as an electric wheelchair were explored and trialed before the decision for an electric chair was made.

As there were no changes made to his home environment and equipment setup Greg continued to experience pain in his shoulders and difficulties whenever he had to negotiate the step into the house and when getting in/out of  his bed as well as the shower.

Electric wheelchair - $13,000

 

Dietitian: $1,200

(6 x $200/hr)

Greg saw a dietitian who provided dietary advice and prescribed a nutritional plan for weight loss. Greg was able to lose his excessive weight and returned back to a healthy weight range at the end of 12 months.

Counselling: $600

(3 x $200/hr)

Greg received 3 counselling sessions which addressed his low mood and signs of social withdrawal.

Evaluation

Total therapy hours: 110

Total cost of care: $35,000 (including electric wheelchair)

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