This cocktail has just as much potential to be a bucket of worms as the present, traditional, system of bulk-funded services for people with intellectual or multiple disabilities.
The Productivity Commission decided it was too difficult to attempt to make service providers accountable to consumers for service level and quality when they have little reason to be as they receive bulk-funding and have a captive market.
They put the consumer in the driving seat to establish marketplace driven quality services, by giving them the service money as an ISP to shop around for what they consider is best for them - being able to change service providers if they wish.
Having consumers in the driving seat, certainly provides the potential to realise customer service and rights based services.
The Productivity Commission appears to have assumed that consumers will shop amongst the traditional service providers. Whereas many parents/families, of people with limited intellectual capacity, will see ISPs as an opportunity to seek the cheapest possible service.
This could mean any unqualified, unregulated, unsafe, renegade service provider with no security rating, little training or experience, and no public liability insurance – the next door neighbour or backyarders, for instance.
The establishment and growth of such as these, will lead to the decline of traditional service providers who, at present, have the ability and resources to properly plan, integrate, maintain and monitor service provision packages, rather than ad-hoc processes by backyard operators.
Rather like one is expected to use a registered electrician, plumber, gas-fitter, etc. People on ISPs should be expected to use a registered service provider. And, those providing services for people with disabilities should be registered as having the necessary provisions to meet recognised standards.
Without a degree of regulation surrounding the use of ISPs to purchase services from registered service providers, the ISP principle could result in a lesser service/s than services under traditional, bulk-funding.