Disability advocate Dr Dinesh Palipana, wants assurances from the Federal Government and the National Disability Insurance agency that the nutrition rights of people with disability will be supported in NDIS reforms.
Every person with disability has unique nutrition needs, he said. “As a person with quadriplegia, managing my energy intake is different to someone who doesn’t have quadriplegia. Some people with disability may need supports to safely swallow and consume food.
“I’ve been fortunate to benefit from the advice and guidance of accredited practising dietitians, but not all people with disability who need nutrition therapy supports have been, or are, as fortunate.
He said navigating the NDIS to access nutrition support from a dietitian can be challenging. “There are also very limited options for people with disability to get access to a dietitian through the wider public health system,” he said.
According to Dieticians Australia CEO, Marco Xuereb the gaps in access to nutrition support for people with disability, across the healthcare system, must be dealt with. “We hope to see reforms to the NDIS that will make it easier for participants to access all the services they need,” he said.
Photo: Dr Dinesh Palipana and Marco Xuereb