The Victorian Government has established the Integrated Cancer Services (ICS) to promote system integration across structural boundaries and to encourage collaborative approaches to evidence-based service development. The ICS bring together a range of stakeholders, clinicians, researchers and consumers who have the ability to influence the development and implementation of evidence-based care. A key focus of the ICS is to reduce inappropriate variation in access and delivery of patient care and on promoting patient participation in all improvement work.
The ICS comprise clusters of hospitals and associated health services that deliver services for people with all types of cancers within a geographic area. Services include public hospitals, community-based services, general practitioners and other primary health organisations, private hospitals and supportive care services. On the recommendation of the report, A cancer services framework for Victoria (2003) there are three metropolitan ICS (MICS) and five regional ICS (RICS) that were established in 2005. The statewide paediatric ICS was established as part of the Caring for children package in 2004 and has a focus on improving outcomes for children with cancer and their families.
For information about each ICS, including participating health services, websites and contact details:
The role of the ICS is to:
- build relationships between providers, health services and settings to plan cancer services across a geographic area based on access, appropriateness and effectiveness
- implement best practice models of cancer care
- improve the effectiveness of cancer care through system coordination and integration
- systematically monitor processes and outcomes of cancer care to improve system-wide performance.
The Victorian Cancer Plan 2016-2020 commits to a refresh and reconfiguration of the ICS to ensure the best possible structure and mechanisms for cancer services improvement. The refresh of the ICS functions and role is currently underway in consultation with the sector. In addition, sector consultation is in progress for the reconfiguration of the ICS. Changes are planned to take effect from July 2019.