Serious Incident Response Scheme guidance now available

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3 March 2021

The Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission has today published detailed guidance on the Serious Incident Response Scheme (SIRS) for providers on its website.

This is in addition to the fact sheets and other resources already available and the webinars planned during March. Further information, including a recording of the first webinar held last week, can be found on the Commission’s website.

These materials reflect the subordinate legislation (which is to be released shortly) and are closely aligned to the Model for Implementation paper that was published on the Department’s website on 9 September 2020. This model paper was a result of a two year engagement with the sector including the:

The incident management system requirements to be implemented from 1 April 2021 build on existing obligations placed on providers under the Aged Care Quality Standards. The changes from 1 April 2021 are to make these obligations more explicit and to focus on minimising the impact on consumers and reducing preventable incidents.

To assist providers with transitioning to the SIRS requirements reporting has been staged, from:

  • 1 April 2021 all ‘Priority 1’ incidents (incidents that have caused, or could reasonably have caused, a consumer physical or psychological injury or discomfort that requires medical or psychological treatment) within 24 hours.
  • 1 October 2021 all ‘Priority 2’ incidents (all other reportable incidents that do not meet the criteria for a ‘Priority 1’) within 30 days.

Final testing of the reporting form is underway and will be available for providers later in March to view. The detailed guidance published today sets out, in Attachment A (pp.71-74), the questions that will be included in the SIRS notification form.

Department of Health

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