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Funding & Disability

Behaviour Support Services

Behaviour Support Services (BSS) aim to improve the life of a person with an intellectual impairment whose behaviour is challenging for their support networks and potentially harmful for themselves or others. For example, the behaviour may be of such intensity, frequency or duration that the physical safety of the person or those around them is likely to be at risk. The behaviour may make it difficult for a person to access everyday settings, activities and relationships. Additionally, the behaviour may make it difficult for support people to know how to respond and maintain safety. The focus of BSS is on assisting a person to develop skills to enable participation in the community. 

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What do Behaviour Support Services do?

BSS work with a person, their family/whänau and friends, and support networks at home and work, to develop and carry out a plan to lessen challenging behaviours or situations that trigger the behaviour. This plan also defines support needed to help a person be independent and participate in their community.

To understand a person's situation, the BSS gathers information from different people and looks at what has prompted the referral. This information is written up into a specialist assessment report. On the basis of this report an individual behaviour support plan is agreed. The plan identifies goals and outcomes, and the strategies to achieve these. Ways of managing possible crises are also written down.

How do Behaviour Support Services help a person?

An individual behaviour support plan details the activities, common tasks and resources required to help a person change their behaviour or the situation causing the behaviour. After the plan has been agreed, education and training is provided to the person and their support networks. The focus is on supporting a person in the environments where they live, work and socialise.

How does a person get Behaviour Support Services?

A person can be assessed for behaviour support services by a Needs Assessment & Service Coordination (NASC) agency or a Regional Intellectual Disability Care Agency (RIDCA). A person or their support networks can contact a behaviour support service directly. In this instance the behaviour support service then makes contact with NASC or RIDCA.

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