The Serious Incident Response Scheme (SIRS) aims to identify and prevent abuse and neglect among people receiving aged care.
It applies to providers of residential aged care and home services.
Home services include:
- home care packages
- Commonwealth Home Support Programme
- flexible care delivered in a home or community setting, including Multi-Purpose Services, Short Term Restorative Care and Transition Care Program
- National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Flexible Aged Care Program.
There are 8 types of reportable incidents under the SIRS.
Type of incident
Unreasonable use of force
Unlawful sexual contact or inappropriate sexual conduct
sexual activities without consent
withholding personal care
insufficient assistance during meals
Psychological or emotional abuse
making threatening gestures
refusing access to care or services as a means of punishment
The provider didn't take reasonable steps to prevent a death.
A death results directly from something the provider did or didn’t do.
Stealing or financial coercion by a staff member
coercing someone to change their will
Inappropriate use of restrictive practices
using a restrictive practice without prior consent
using a restrictive practice in a non-emergency situation
issuing a drug to influence someone’s behaviour as a form of restrictive practice
Unexplained absence from care
Someone is absent from the service without explanation, and there are reasonable grounds to report the absence to the police.
If an incident isn’t one of the 8 reportable incident types, you don't need to report it to us. You may still need to report it to someone else.
You must also manage all incidents in line with your Incident Management System.
More information and examples of reportable incidents
For more information, download the SIRS guidelines for aged care providers:
SIRS decision support tool
When reporting a SIRS incident, you must say whether it’s Priority 1 or 2.
Use our SIRS decision support tool to help you decide the priority level.
Report an incident
You must notify us of all reportable incidents, including:
- alleged or suspected incidents
- incidents involving people with cognitive or mental impairment, such as dementia.
Log in to the My Aged Care Service and Support portal to report an incident.
Provider responsibilities around reporting incidents
Aged care providers must:
- assign roles and responsibilities for reporting an incident
- train assigned staff to report an incident.
We've created a suite of SIRS resources, including guides, fact sheets, videos and forms.