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The Victorian Cancer Reforms and Southern Melbourne Integrated Cancer Service (SMICS)

Provision of an efficient and effective cancer service system that meets the needs of those affected by cancer is the focus of the reforms implemented by the Victorian Government in 2004. The two key components of the cancer reforms were establishing Integrated Cancer Services and developing care based upon tumour streams.   

The Integrated Cancer Services (ICS) are clusters of hospitals and associated health services that plan and improve services for people with all types of cancers within a geographic area.  SMICS is one of eight regionally based integrated cancer services, whilst the Paediatric Integrated Cancer Service is a state-wide collaboration. SMICS comprises Alfred Health, Cabrini Health, Peninsula Health and Southern Health.

The ten tumour streams include: breast, central nervous system, colorectal, genito-urinary, gynaecology, haematology, head and neck, lung, skin and upper gastro-intestinal.  Fourteen Patient Management Frameworks (PMFs) were initially developed and in 2009 the osteosarcoma and soft tissue PMF was released. The PMFs are a guide to the optimal care management of patients with particular tumour types.

Four priority outcome areas were identified for reform and are the basis for quality improvement with the ICS.  These priority outcomes are:

  • multidisciplinary care (MDC)
  • care coordination (CC)
  • supportive care (SC)
  • reducing unwanted variations in care (RUVC).

SMICS Governance

SMICS is governed by a group that includes Chief Executive Officers, Directors of Medical Services and departmental heads from all four health services. This group is responsible for SMICS decision-making, budgetary decisions and for facilitating projects within their individual health services.  Additional support to decision making is provided by the SMICS clinical advisory group and the supportive care advisory group.

 

SMICS Vision

Connecting cancer care, driving best practice and improving patient outcomes

SMICS Mission 

Alfred Health, Cabrini Health, Peninsula Health and Southern Health will work together to improve outcomes for people affected by cancer in southern Melbourne and beyond

 

SMICS Principles

  • Cancer services will be population-focused
  • individuals will have access to a full range of cancer services (prevention, screening, diagnosis, treatment, rehabilitation, supportive care and palliative care)
  • referral pathways will be clearly defined
  • care will be multidisciplinary and coordinated
  • service planning will support a critical mass of expertise and leadership to promote quality cancer care.

Strategic Goals 2010-2013

  • implement best practice models of care
  • improve the effectiveness of care through system coordination and integration
  • systematically monitor processes and outcomes of care to improve system wide performance.

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