PSP Service Packages - Q&As
General PSP package
How do PSP packages get recorded or added to ChildStory for a child or young person entering care or a new placement?
PSP packages are triggered in the child or young person’s active primary placement record in ChildStory where the required fields are complete and the placement record is approved.
The default restoration case plan goal and low child needs packages will be triggered where the case plan goal and CAT score are not recorded.
Specialist packages are approved based on eligibility and are manually added to the child or young person’s active primary placement. Refer to the how to create a placement QRG for more information.
What PSP service package covers work associated with court proceedings?
What does DCJ fund?
From 1 March 2020, DCJ funds costs associated with court proceedings as part of its statutory role in assessing safety and risk and leading court proceeding. DCJ funds these costs where:
- the matter is before the court and an interim order has been made
- a section 90 application has been filed (including where a parent or other persons file the application)
This includes urinalysis, DNA testing, specific court ordered assessments and legal costs (including expert witness attendance at hearings and bail fees). Refer to question below on subpoenas.
What do FSPs fund from the PSP service packages?
FSPs fund costs associated to their case management role in providing a placement, and undertaking work to reach a case plan goal and meeting the child’s needs as outlined in the service overview (see Case Plan Goal Overview and Baseline Overview for package inclusions). This includes evidence based restoration assessments, and assessment of prospective guardians or adoptive parents).
This also includes urinalysis and other assessments when used as evidence in:
- supporting a proposal to change a case plan goal after a final order has been made e.g. from long term care to restoration, or
- preparing for section 90 proceedings prior to the application being filed.
Accredited Adoption Service Providers are funded to prepare and file an application with the Supreme court of NSW. DCJ prepares and files all section 90 applications.
Where the above tasks funded by FSPs are considered onerous and above routine requirements and the FSP has made a realistic financial contribution, DCJ will consider an application for complex needs.
Who pays for costs associated with subpoenas issued by DCJ during court proceedings?
DCJ may issue subpoenas during the course of any court proceedings. DCJ practitioners issue these subpoenas on behalf of the Secretary, as the agency exercising parental responsibility for children in OOHC. Costs including invoices received for the preparation of material that has been subpoenaed by the Secretary, will be covered by DCJ.
If DCJ were to issue a subpoena to a Funded Service Provider (FSP) or FSP employee, the FSP is responsible for meeting the costs of complying with the subpoena.
How will after care be funded? Will the post education support allowance continue to be paid?
Do PSP packages cover the cost of Passport and Birth Certificate applications?
An FSP may apply for a child or young person’s birth certificate provided they have a letter of authority accompanying the application approved and signed by the appropriate DCJ delegate of the Minister. After placement with an FSP, an application for a copy of the child or young person’s birth certificate is to be funded by the FSP.
Registering births and applying for passports is the responsibility of DCJ. This responsibility has not been delegated to any FSPs.
What happens to the PSP packages where a child or young person moves placement?
When a child or young person enters a new placement or changes providers, a new placement record needs to be created. Once a new placement record is approved and all its critical fields completed, it will trigger either:
- default packages
- packages based on the approved case plan goal and CAT assessment in ChildStory.
To ensure accurate PSP packages are paid, information in the child or young person’s OOHC Case Plan Goal and CAT record must be accurate and the records approved.
What rate of carer allowance do FSPs need to pay their carers?
FSPs are responsible for negotiating the allowances they pay their carers. The PSP Program Level Agreement (PLA) sets a baseline minimum carer allowance that FSPs must meet. This is the DCJ Standard Care Statutory Care Allowance rate for the age of each child or young person in their care. FSPs are able to determine their carer allowances for any amount at or above this minimum rate. In addition FSPs are expected to have a pool of suitable carers and have a responsibility to ensure their carers are adequately supported
How will step-down support be provided under the PSP?
Step down support will be provided to families both during case planning towards the child’s permanency goal as well as after the goal has been achieved. The new case coordination package can be accessed by service providers after a child or young person has been safely restored to his or her parent/s, or in some cases after guardianship or adoption.
PSP is a child and family-centred program so there is no single pathway to managing the transition to step-down support under the
PSP program. The path to accessing this support will be different for each child and young person.
CASE PLAN GOAL PACKAGES
Can DCJ refer a family where the child or young person is in statutory OOHC to a PSP funded service provider for a case plan goal package and also a funded program?
The implementation of PSP Packages is occurring alongside other DCJ funded restoration programs. These include Intensive Family Preservation (IFP), Intensive Family Based Service (IFBS), NEWPIN, Multi-Systemic Therapy – Child Abuse and Neglect (MST-CAN®) and Functional Family Therapy – Child Welfare (FFT-CW®).
DCJ may determine that it is appropriate and in the best interests of the child and their family, to refer them to both a funded restoration program and a PSP funded service provider (FSP). It is acknowledged that some funded programs do not provide case management services or only provide specific services for placement stability. It is therefore appropriate to continue to fund the full PSP service packages to FSPs.
- The authority to make a referral to both an FSP and a funded restoration program sits with DCJ as the commissioner of services.
- DCJ referrals to FSPs and funded restoration programs follow negotiations with relevant district staff, including the DCJ Contract Manager.
All children in OOHC have an open case with DCJ. Referrals will come from the relevant DCJ unit (CSC or CFDU) and will likely vary from district to district.
When does the 2 year timeframe for case plan goal packages commence?
PSP packages are triggered to commence from either a placement or an approved change in case plan goal:
- in the case of a new entry to care - restoration is the default case plan goal package and commences from the start date of the placement. The 2 year timeframe does not start over once a final order is made.
- in the case of a change in case plan goal - the case plan goal package commences from the date the new case plan goal is approved in ChildStory.
Service providers cannot receive a case plan goal package (for restoration, guardianship or adoption) beyond two years unless it has been reviewed and approved for extension by the appropriate delegate.
What information in ChildStory triggers the creation of the case plan goal package in the child’s active placement?
The case plan goal package is triggered by the approved case plan goal in the child or young person’s OOHC Case on ChildStory.
The only way to change which case plan goal package is paid for a child or young person is to update the OOHC Case Plan Goal (within the OOHC Case) and for it to be approved by DCJ. Service providers can request a change to a child or young person’s OOHC case plan goal through the ChildStory Partner Community (only where an initial case plan has been completed by DCJ).
Where the case plan goal is missing or incomplete the default case plan goal package is restoration.
Refer to the Changing a Case Plan Goal QRG for more information.
Who has delegation to approve a proposal to change a child or young person’s case plan goal?
The final decision to approve the case plan goal rests with DCJ as:
- the agency with statutory responsibility for assessing children’s safety and risk and exercising parental responsibility for children in OOHC
- the commissioner of the permanency support service (whether or not the child is in OOHC).
Where a proposal is made to change a young person’s goal to restoration after they have self placed refer to q.13 below.
Where a proposal to change the case plan goal to restoration is made and the child has not yet been restored but restoration is planned, does a section 90 application need to be filed prior to changing a case plan goal to restoration?
No. However a section 90 application must be filed, with a permanency plan prepared and the previous final order rescinded, prior to the child being returned home full time to the care of his or her parent/s.
When a young person self places with their parent/s, and following some preliminary casework and prior assessment the FSP and DCJ both support restoration, can DCJ formally approve a change in case plan goal?
Yes. A section 90 application is to be filed as soon as practicable after an assessment has been completed and a decision has been made to support the child or young person to remain at home with their parent/s.
Decisions about a young person’s care arrangements and case plan goal should be made in accordance with the best interests of the young person and based on their individual circumstances. Where required, legal advice should be sought.
Refer to the Away from or Not in Placement policy for how to respond to a young person away from their placement.
For a child or young person progressing to adoption when does the case plan goal package commence?
The case plan goal package will commence from the date DCJ approves a change to the child or young person’s case plan goal. This is to be the same date they commence at the formal enquiry stage as per the approved OOHC Adoption process.
What if a child or young person’s adoption process is on hold, does the adoption case plan goal package cease?
Children or young people who are on hold and meet the on hold policy (under 6 months), should, in most cases, continue to receive the adoption case plan goal package. This will need to be determined on a case by case basis, noting the packages are time limited.
Any case that is on hold for extended periods and outside of the timeframe listed in the policy should receive the long term care case plan goal package and be reviewed at the end of the on hold period to determine the most appropriate case plan goal.
Do FSPs receive the full 2 year funding from a case plan goal package even if the goal is achieved in a shorter period?
The PSP contracts introduce a number of incentives to promote service provision that is child and young person centred, focused on delivering high quality supports effectively and efficiently, and that are accountable for outcomes.
PSP offers incentives for support providers to achieve the best possible outcomes for children and young people through:
- retaining a surplus at the end of the financial year (Clause 5.6 PSP Program Level Agreement)
- *payments for the quantity and quality of supports delivered – see Schedule 3, Clause 4.2 Funding Package Payment
- advance payments (three months ahead) for the agreed delivery of services, to be reconciled at the beginning of the next period (Schedule 3 – Clause 4.2 (a))
- an additional placement capacity payment, built into the payment model to ensure the provider is responsive (Schedule 3, Clause 4.1).
Once the case plan goal is achieved, the case plan goal package ceases (as does the child needs package and any other specialist package). Providers may be able to receive a baseline case coordination package to prevent the breakdown of permanency outcomes, for a period up to 6 months following achievement of the case plan goal.
Can an FSP be funded to provide a placement only (i.e. Baseline package of Foster Care or Aboriginal Foster Care only)?
The PSP packaged care service model is composed of a case plan goal package, baseline package and child needs package. Specialist packages are also available depending on the child or young person’s circumstances and eligibility. In extraordinary circumstances, an additional specialist package of complex needs may also be added.
The service design can be thought of as a ‘build-up’ approach where flexible options can be selected to meet the needs of children, young people and their families, to achieve their case plan goal.
Does information in ChildStory trigger the payment of the case coordination package?
The case coordination package needs to be manually entered into ChildStory as it is managed on a case by case basis. DCJ approves the payment of this package according to the needs of the child or young person and their family.
Child needs packages
Will the approved CAT outcome in ChildStory determine the Child Needs Package?
The outcome of the CAT assessment will determine which child needs package a child or young person will receive. The CAT assessment will be either: Low, Medium or High needs.
Where a CAT assessment is not completed, the default child needs package is Low.
The only way to change a child needs package is to conduct a new CAT assessment (within the OOHC Case) and for it to be approved by DCJ. Where DCJ agrees to fund a higher Child Needs package than the assessed outcome a manual override can be applied.
Is a child or young person eligible for a High Needs package if they have a CAT assessment outcome of High and are in foster care?
Child Needs Packages are paid according to a child or young person's CAT assessment outcome.
Children and young people do not have to be living in an Intensive Therapeutic Care placement to be eligible for a High Needs package.
What definition of ‘Culturally and Linguistically Diverse’ is to be applied to determine eligibility for the CALD specialist package?
Culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) is a broad and inclusive descriptor for communities with diverse language, ethnic background, nationality, dress, traditions, food, societal structures, art and religion characteristics. People of CALD background are generally defined as those born overseas, in countries other than those classified by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) as “main English speaking countries” (UK, New Zealand, Republic of Ireland, Canada, USA, South Africa).
- the term CALD supersedes the term Non-English Speaking Background (NESB)
- people of CALD background are non homogenous
- CALD is strongly linked to language.
Can a child receive more than one specialist package? For example a CALD and Cultural Plan (Aboriginal) package?
Yes. Children and young people can be eligible for multiple specialist packages where the eligibility criteria is met.
For example, if a child is identified as Aboriginal and CALD in ChildStory both specialist packages will be paid to the Funded Service Provider.