Other Projects & Case Studies

Direct Client Care and Support Training Package Project: Awaiting Ministerial Endorsement

SkillsIQ, under the direction of the Direct Client Care and Support IRC is undertaking a project to update a range of current qualifications to ensure that they meet the current and future skills needs of the Australian Health system.


The Certificate III in Individual Support, first introduced in 2015, brought together previous Certificate III qualifications in the areas of Aged Care, Disability Support and Home & Community Care. It reflects the role of workers who may work in a residential or community care setting with clients who require personalised support due to ageing, disability or other reasons. They may provide a range of supports according to the individual needs of the client, including personal care, mealtime support, support for management of chronic conditions or disabilities, mental health and emotional and social wellbeing supports, palliative care, medication support and more to assist in achieving clients’ individual health goals. Along with the Certificate IV in Ageing Support and the Certificate IV in Disability, the Certificate III and its three specialisations in Ageing, Disability and Home & Community Care forms a fundamental part of the training for workers in these important areas.

During the consultation conducted by the Aged Care Workforce Taskforce, feedback was received that the current Certificate III in Individual Support (Ageing) was not adequately meeting the skills needs of workers and employers in the aged care sector, thereby jeopardising the quality of care. Various reasons were given for this, but one of the most common was that the packaging rules of the generic qualification allowed for poor elective selection, resulting in graduates that did not have the requisite skills.

The introduction of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) has allowed people living with disability greater choice and control over their lives, which has in turn led to an increase in workforce demand, as well as greater demand for personalisation of care. This has meant that disability service providers now more than ever before require a diversity of skills and personal characteristics among their workers to match the diversity of the client base. Current challenges in the disability education sector include criticisms of the current Certificate III in Individual Support (Disability), which further investigation has highlighted issues concerning how the training is implemented, as opposed to the content that is being delivered.

The Direct Client Care and Support IRC is working in collaboration with the Disability Support IRC and the Aged Services IRC to update the Qualifications and relevant Units of Competency within the Certificate III in Individual Support, the Certificate IV in Disability and the Certificate IV in Ageing Support.

Project Governance

This project is being overseen by the Direct Client Care and Support IRC, in collaboration with the Aged Services IRC and the Disability Support IRC. Membership of the Direct Client Care and Support IRC may be seen below:

Project Status - Awaiting Ministerial Endorsement

The update of the Certificate III in Individual Support is being conducted alongside the update of the Certificate IV in Ageing Support and Certificate IV in Disability. While all three of these Qualifications fall under the remit of the Direct Client Care and Support IRC, the Aged Services IRC and Disability Support IRCs are working collaboratively with the Direct Client Care and Support IRC to undertake the review and update of the Training Package Products.

An Individual Support Working Group was formed, comprising three IRC members from each of the three IRCs to review the feedback to form recommendations for the IRCs to approve for the final draft. The previously convened subject matter expert discussion groups in the areas of dementia care, autism, assistive technologies, palliative care and nutrition and mealtime were also consulted as required to inform the final drafts.

The Training Package Products were submitted for consideration by the AISC at its October 2021 meeting. The AISC approved the revised Training Package Products, on the proviso that the training products are referred to Skills Senior Officials Network (SSON) as part of the endorsement process, prior to Ministerial approval.

For further detail on the AISC decision, please see the Communique from the October 2021 meeting here.

At this stage the SSON has not completed its deliberations and provided its advice and there is not yet a date determined for endorsement of the Training Package Products and release on training.gov.au. Once this is determined, we will update this page with further detail. For more information see here.

Further Information

For further information, please contact Melinda Brown on 02 9392 8100 or via email at melinda.brown@skillsiq.com.au.