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Posted on 04 Nov 2020

VAHI was pleased to release the second statewide report on Victorian Health Incident Management System (VHIMS) reported incidents in October. The release of this report marks an important milestone: the first time that medication-related VHIMS data have been reported at a statewide level.

The data captured in this report covers VHIMS data submitted by 128 Victorian public and community health services for the period from 1 July 2017 to 31 December 2019. 

During this period, over 647,000 clinical and occupational health and safety (OHS) incidents, near misses, and hazards were reported. 

Key results include: 

  • 509,812 or 79% of these were clinical incidents. 
  • Of all clinical incidents, 83,191 or 16% were medication incidents. 
  • 64% of all medication incidents occurred during the administration of medication. 
  • 30% of all medication incidents cite communication or documentation as a contributing factor
  • 64% of all medication incidents were rated as Incident Severity Rating (ISR) 4 – no harm/near miss.
  • High risk medications (APINCH*) are more likely to be involved in more serious outcomes for the patient (ISR1 – severe/death).

The report seeks to stimulate important conversations about medication incident reporting and monitoring, and how practices may be improved at Victorian public and community health services to drive quality and safety improvements.

A range of improvement opportunities were identified in the report include focusing on actions to improve the inappropriate administration of medications and improving communication and documentation factors to reduce medication incidents. 

Upcoming webinar: VHIMS statewide report results explained

On 26 November 2020, VAHI will be hosting an interactive webinar to discuss the results of the VHIMS medication incident report. The webinar will be hosted by Dr Lance Emerson, CEO of VAHI, and will include a panel discussion of the report. Stay tuned to our Twitter and LinkedIn channels for more information on the virtual event and registration details.  

VAHI would like to thank the Victorian public health services that have contributed data for statewide reporting purposes, and the Victorian public health service staff who have contributed to the VHIMS reforms. 

For more information about the VHIMS report, please contact Megan Goadby, Manager, Safety and Surveillance team via  

 *APINCH includes antimicrobials, potassium and other electrolytes, insulin, narcotics (opioids) and other sedatives, chemotherapeutic agents and heparin and other anticoagulants.

Page last updated: 10 Nov 2020