National Auslan Interpreter Booking and Payment Service (NABS)
The Department of Social Services administers NABS to provide accredited Auslan (Australian Sign Language) interpreters to deaf Auslan users free of charge when they attend private medical consultations.
NABS is currently delivered by Wesley Mission Queensland.
Transitioning to the NDIS
Clients eligible for the NDIS will access funds for Auslan interpreters through their plan. Through the NDIS, clients are able to use their funds to book Auslan interpreters for a wider range of activities and choose which interpreter service/s they use. Clients will continue to receive supports through NABS until their NDIS plan is finalised.
Continuity of Support
It is expected that all NABS clients under 65 years old will be eligible for the NDIS. However, as announced in the 2018-19 Budget, the Australian Government will provide Continuity of Support (CoS) for existing NABS clients who are ineligible for the NDIS. CoS will support clients ineligible for the NDIS to achieve similar outcomes to those they were aiming to achieve prior to the introduction of the scheme.
Once the rollout of the NDIS has been completed, existing NABS clients, who are over 65 years old and therefore ineligible for the NDIS, will receive CoS through one or more provider/s contracted to deliver similar services.
NABS will continue to be administered by the Department of Social Services.
Download and share resources with staff and clients
The following stories and resources help to explain the types of supports available for people are deaf, including access to Auslan interpreters.
NABS provides interpreters free of charge to both adults and children who use Auslan to communicate and require an interpreter for health care appointments that attract a Medicare rebate and some specific private health consultations.
All Medicare rebateable consultations provided in a private medical practice (by a General Practitioner or Specialist) are covered. This means that if you can claim a rebate from Medicare for the consultation, or if your doctor bulk bills, then the interpreting service is covered free of charge, as well as certain other health consultations. Consultations that occur in private or public hospitals are not covered by this service.