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Self-advocacy toolkit

What you need to know for better aged care

Self-advocacy or speaking up means having the right information to get the care and support you need. Explore the topics below to start.

Home Self-advocacy toolkit Solving common aged care problems Serious incidents

Serious incidents

Everyone has the right to be safe.

If a serious incident happens in your home or aged care home, staff must

  • check you and others are okay
  • provide you with immediate support to ensure your safety, health and wellbeing
  • make a record of what happened
  • report the incident to the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission under the Serious Incident Response Scheme (SIRS).

They are also required to document ‘near misses’ and meet with you and others affected by the incident to explain what they have done about the incident and engage you in open discussions about how they could have managed the incident better.

Reportable incidents include

  • unreasonable use of force
  • unlawful sexual contact or inappropriate sexual conduct
  • psychological or emotional abuse
  • unexplained absence from care
  • stealing or financial coercion by a staff member
  • neglect
  • inappropriate use of restrictive practices
  • unexpected death.

SIRS – What does this mean for your care and services?

Learn how the Serious Incident Response Scheme (SIRS) supports your right to be treated with dignity and respect and to live your life free from neglect, violence and abuse. Video from the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission. Click on the ‘CC’ button to turn on captions and the ‘Youtube’ icon for full screen.

Documents and external links

Learn more about serious incidents. These documents and websites offer help, strategies, and practical information. Brief descriptions are provided for each document or link.

SIRS resources - Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission

Visit the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission website to view videos and other resources about SIRS and your rights to receive safe, high-quality care.

What does SIRS mean for my care?

Download this handy leaflet from the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission on SIRS and what it means for your care and services.

Aged Care Open Disclosure Framework and Guidance

Open disclosure is the open discussion that an aged care provider has with people receiving aged care services when something goes wrong that has harmed or had the potential to cause harm to a person receiving aged care service. View the resources from the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission.

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