What Is Involved In A Psychosocial Disability Assessment?

What Is Involved In A Psychosocial Disability Assessment

The NDIS is devoted to assisting all Australians with disability to rehabilitate and reclaim relevant roles in society through access to valuable support services.

This extends to psychosocial disability – a term for a disability which arises out of mental illness, which interferes with a person’s capability to engage with society and complete everyday tasks.

However, before accessing the NDIS psychosocial disability support, clients must undergo a psychological disability assessment to determin eligibility. Identifying your condition and scope helps develop a more customised NDIS approach.

This blog will explain what a psychosocial disability assessment comprises and how it can assist you in receiving the appropriate mental health services. But before we get into that, let’s start by defining psychosocial disability.

What Is A Psychosocial Disability?

Psychosocial disability is a behavioural and social condition resulting from a mental health condition. It refers to how a person’s mental health problems get in the way of their daily life and the activities they usually engage in. This interplay between mental illness and societal circumstances makes a person with psychosocial disability more vulnerable.

In other words, the individual’s mental health issue hinders their capacity to function appropriately in their environment. This dilemma is made even more difficult by the social barriers and stigma created by this situation.

People of all ages and socioeconomic backgrounds can be affected by psychosocial disability, and is important they recveive the adequate supports in order for them to live a more fulfilling life.

How To Determine If A Person Qualifies For The NDIS Psychosocial Disability Service?

No single test or procedure can definitively diagnose a psychosocial disability. Having a mental illness also doesnt necessarily equate to psychosocial disability.

In order to measure a person’s psychosocial functioning, you need to talk to a mental health professional.

What the NDIS considers is how a person’s mental health condition affects their daily life, not the diagnosis itself. That is because a diagnosis only tells part of the story.

What Is A Psychosocial Disability Assessment?

A psychosocial disability assessment looks at a person’s mental health and social life as a whole. It looks at how a person sees themslves and how well they can function in their community.

These functional assessments also seek to learn more about the patient so they can get better care and help them achieve their health and social goals.

What Is Included In A Psychosocial Disability Assessment?

A psychosocial disability assessment starts with a consultation with a qualified clinician. Following that, the treating clinician will give a series of tests based on the World Health Organisation disability assessment schedule’s six functional domains, such as:

  • Communication: the person’s ability to talk, write, or use sign language, understand what other people are saying, and be understood.
  • Learning: a person’s ability to take in and remember new information, as well as to improve and use what they already know and can do.
  • Mobility: a person’s ability to move around and do everyday tasks that require the use of their limbs.
  • Self-care: activities relating to personal care, hygiene, grooming, feeding oneself, and health care.
  • Self-management: the capacity to organise one’s life, plan and make decisions, and accept personal responsibility, including completing everyday activities and resolving issues.
  • Social interaction: a person’s ability to deal with feelings and emotions in a social setting, such as making friends, connecting with others, and acting within acceptable limits towards others.

Getting an accurate picture of a person’s mental health condition and social functioning often involves the following steps;

  1. Client Interview
    A psychologist or qualified clinician will talk to the patient one-on-one to learn about their personality, ethnicity, family history, main complaints, the history of the presenting illness, prescription list, coping skills, interests, and risk factors like challenging behaviours or suicidal thoughts.They may also ask people who know you, like family members or friends, for extra information.
  2. Psychological Examination
    This test is necessary to assess a person’s stress or energy levels, behaviour, and motor activity. It can aid in the differentiation of mood disorders, thinking problems, and memory deficits.Body movements can be a sign of anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder, depression, schizophrenia, or drug abuse. Tics and tremors, for example, could be signs of a neurological disorder, an unfavourable reaction to a medication, or anxiety.Speech patterns, emotions, and incident reactions may also be considered.
  3. Cognitive Evaluation
    The client may have to answer simple questions or do simple tasks. But the psychologist will also look at how well the client can focus, keep their thoughts on track, and avoid getting distracted.The inability to pay attention for a long time may indicate other problems, especially with executive function and memory. That might require additional tests to figure out their overall mental health condition.Throughout these functional assessments, the psychologist or qualified support worker will gather evidence for the psychosocial disability form. It will include a summary of the client’s situation, the psychologist’s thoughts and evaluation, the client’s goals, and a recommended care or treatment plan.

What Follows A Psychosocial Disability Assessment?

If you have been identified with a psychological disability and filled out the necessary paperwork, you can now access the NDIS Psychosocial Recovery Program.

A Helping Hand With St Jude’s

St. Jude’s has outstanding NDIS Psychosocial Recovery Coaches who can provide personalised assistance to people with psychosocial disability. We can also help you access other resources to aid in your recovery.

At St. Jude’s, we understand that no two clients’ experiences are the same and that it’s not always easy sailing. We recognise that each client moves at their own pace. Some may not even be ready to move forward with their rehabilitation plan.

To encourage our clients to interact, we strive to be creative in how we do things, like changing the way we communicate to each client, adapting to how they do things, or slowing down the pace.

Care that is focused on the client and fits their needs is the most important part of St. Jude’s psychosocial recovery coaching.

Reach out to us if you would like to learn more, or to access psychosocial recovery coaching as part of your NDIS plan.