Client incident management system

Client incidents that occur during service delivery and result in harm to a client are required to be reported by all in-scope services in the client incident management system (CIMS).

The client incident management system (CIMS) focuses on the safety and wellbeing of our clients by outlining the approach and key actions to manage client incidents.

Reporting client incidents through CIMS applied to department funded organisations and National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) providers from 15 January 2018 and for department staff of selected delivered services from 1 October 2018.

CIMS operational updates

The operational update 1 – 2019 (word) supports the operation of Chapter 4 of the Client incident management guide where it is ambiguous or unclear.  It should be used to aid decision making in relation to investigative actions required in response to major impact incidents alleging abuse, poor quality of care or unexplained injuries.

The investigation outcome and case review template (word) is to be submitted when an investigation outcome has been determined at screening following finalisation of a case review.

The investigation outcome and root cause analysis template (word) is to be submitted when an investigation outcome has been determined at screening following finalisation of a root cause analysis review.

CIMS guides

The Client incident management guide (CIMS) (word) (guide) describes each of the actions and responsibilities of service providers and the department during the management of client incidents. Service providers include department-funded organisations and department-delivered services.

The Client incident management guide - out-of-home care addendum (CIMS) (word) should be read in conjunction with the guide and provides specific guidance for allegations of abuse by carers (home based care - foster care and kinship care, residential care and lead tenant) of children living in out-of-home care (OOHC).

Client incident register

All service providers must own, manage and maintain a client incident register to capture and transmit information.  For more information, see Client incident register

The CIMS incident report web form and the CIMS client incident register are two components of the department-built CIMS.

Learning and development

A range of training materials have been developed to support users of the CIMS. For more information, see Learning and development.

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.

In scope services for CIMS

The CIMS applies to the following services, delivered by the department and our funded organisations. For out of scope services, see Appendix C of the Client incident management guide (word).

  • 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 NDIS 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
  • Department-delivered disability services

    • Two children’s group homes, East Division – Disability Accommodation Services
    • Five group homes (previously Sandhurst), North Division – Disability Accommodation Services
    • Ararat Day Program, West Division – Disability Day Service
    • Disability justice case management, all Divisions – Disability Justice
    • Specialist forensic accommodation service, North Division – Disability Justice
    • Disability forensic and assessment services, all Divisions – Disability Justice
    • Disability Intake, all Divisions
Client incident management system

Please note: The helpline number established to support the transition to the new process for reporting client incidents will be deactivated 31 January 2019.  From 1 February 2019, specific policy and system related supports will continue to be available through the CIMS website resources or via email:

Stakeholders using their own IT reporting system and submitting incidents via the application program interface should continue to speak with their IT vendor.