Client incident management system

The department has developed a new client incident management system (CIMS) that focuses on the safety and wellbeing of clients.

The new CIMS empowers service providers to effectively respond to and manage client incidents, to be accountable for their actions and to manage the quality of their own services. 

Services in scope for CIMS

The new CIMS will apply to the following services, delivered by the department and our funded organisations:

Children, youth and family services

  • Family and community services
  • Out-of-home care
  • Secure welfare
  • Statutory child protection services

Disability services

  • Individual support
  • Information, planning and capacity building
  • Targeted services
  • Residential accommodation services
  • Victorian approved National Disability Insurance Scheme providers of disability and psychosocial supports.

Health services

  • Aged care and carer’s support services
  • Alcohol and drug treatment services
  • Community palliative care services
  • Home and community care (HACC) services for people aged under 65 and under 50 for Aboriginal people)
  • Mental health community support services (MHCSS)
  • Sexual health prevention services.

Housing and community building services

  • Department managed housing
  • Homelessness assistance
  • Long-term housing assistance
  • Youth services
  • Refugee minor program
  • Youth services

For more information, see the CIMS Implementation fact sheet and the CIMS scope summary in Related information.

NDIS providers

Victoria's quality and safeguards arrangements will remain during transition to full scheme roll-out in 2019. This means that NDIS providers are required to comply with the new CIMS.

For full details of services in and out of scope for the CIMS, see the CIMS scope summary in Related information.

Project phasing

The new CIMS is being delivered in 2 phases, as follows.

Phase 1: New policy - development of a new client incident management guide (policy)

The new CIMS now has end-to-end approach and comprises 5 stages:

  • Identification and response
  • Reporting
  • Incident investigation
  • Incident review
  • Analysis and learning of incident information to improve the quality of service and supports to clients.

For more information, see the new CIMS policy summary in Related information.

Phase 2: CIMS implementation - across all in-scope service providers

The implementation date for the CIMS has been revised to 15 January 2018.

The revised implementation date allows for further support to service providers by way of training and information technology support.

Timeframes are as follows.

From September 2017 to 15 January 2018

  • Online modules and training programs available for funded organisations and departmental staff
  • Transition arrangements to the new CIMS finalised.

From 15 January

  • Full implementation of the CIMS
  • Current incident reporting approaches to be withdrawn
  • Learning and development activities continue.
  • CIMS information technology

    A new IT solution has been developed to support the implementation of the CIMS. The department is working with third party software providers to facilitate the transition to the new IT system.

    All service providers are required to have a client incident register (CIR) to be able to store and transmit client incident reports, investigations and reviews.

    Availability of the department-built CIR

    The department has built a CIR for department-delivered services including Child Protection, Disability Accommodation Services and Secure Welfare. We can provide access to a department-built CIR if funded organisations do not have access to their own.

    Funded organisations intending to use the department-built CIR are required to complete the CIMS CIR onboarding process for their organisation before 15 January 2018.

    Application Program Interface (API)

    The CIMS API will allow external service provider systems to electronically submit client incident information from existing IT platforms to the department.

    A new version of the CIMS API specifications was released in August 2017. They are as follows:

    Funded organisations intending to use the CIMS API are required to complete the CIMS API onboarding process for their organisation before 15 January 2018.

    CIMS IT e-learning modules and user guides

    To support users of the department-built CIMS IT solution, the department is developing e-learning modules and user guides. For more information, see CIMS learning and development.

  • CIMS learning and development

    To support the implementation of the CIMS, a range of learning and development modules and classroom based sessions are being developed.

    Understanding the CIMS policy

    Four downloadable, self-paced learning modules to support service provider staff in their understanding of the CIMS policy are being developed.

    Each module will take participants between 1 to 2 hours to complete. They include the learning objectives for participants, a number of self-checked learning activities and a participant feedback form.

    Module 1: The CIMS end-to-end model (word)

    Module 2: Responding to and reporting client incidents (word)

    Module 3: Investigating client incidents (word)

    Training for staff involved in investigating and reviewing client incidents

    One day, classroom based training programs, aimed at service provider staff involved in investigating and reviewing client incidents, have been developed:

    • CIMS Investigating client incidents
    • CIMS Reviewing client incidents

    Further information on these courses, the 2017 schedule and to book a session, see the CIMS classroom training portal.

    The 2018 schedule for these training programs will be advised in December 2017.

    Using the CIMS IT

    Two self-paced, e-learning modules to support service provider staff to use the CIMS IT are being developed.

    Each module will take participants up to an hour to complete. These modules are easy to navigate and include simulations of tasks undertaken within the CIMS IT and an opportunity for participant to practice some tasks.

    CIMS IT user guides

    Two detailed CIMS IT user guides support service provider staff to use the CIMS IT are being developed.

    CIMS IT client incident report from user manual

    The CIMS IT client incident report user manual is designed to be used by service provider staff who are required to report and manage client incidents via the department-built CIMS IT.

    CIMS IT user manual client incident report form (word)

    CIMS IT training environment incident report webform

    A training environment version of the CIMS IT incident report webform is available to support service provider staff to use the CIMS IT.

    The training environment CIMS IT incident report webform can be used by service provider staff to support them to use the department-built CIMS IT. 

    Please note that in the training environment:

    • Users must select ‘Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) as the service provider organisation
    • The function to ‘save and return to a draft incident report’ is not enabled.

CIMS video stories

To support the implementation of the CIMS and to assist staff to develop their understanding of the CIMS policy, a series of CIMS video stories have been developed.

Video story 1 – CIMS overview

This video will answer questions such as:

  • What is CIMS?
  • Why has it been introduced?
  • What is changing in relation to client incident management?

Video story 2 – CIMS incident identification, response and reporting

This video will answer questions such:

  • What is changing in relation to client incident reporting?
  • How are incident reports classified?
  • What are the new CIMS incident types?
  • What time frames apply?

Video story 3 – CIMS incident investigations

This video will answer questions such as:

  • What is an incident investigation?
  • What is screening?
  • What is the investigation manager’s role?
  • What time frames apply?