The HCTC Framework was developed by the State Government to support Victorian health services to strengthen their responses to vulnerable children and drive system-wide improvements to deliver coordinated and high quality care. HCTC is a quality framework which aligns with existing Child Safe Standards and provides guidance to health services to embed organisational governance, systems and structures to ensure early identification and effective response to children at risk of child abuse and neglect.
In our region, DHHS, Gippsland Primary Health Network, Latrobe Health Assembly, the Inner Gippsland Children and Youth Area Partnership (CYAP) and the four Gippsland PCPs are working together to support agencies to implement the HCTC Framework.
A 12 month pilot project is almost underway involving ten agencies across all six Gippsland LGAs. The project is being led by the Gippsland PCPs and Inner Gippsland CYAP and supported by a Project Coordinator based at CWGPCP in Moe. Participation was via an EOI process which followed on from a survey to gauge Gippsland agencies’ levels of HCTC implementation and an introductory Forum last October.
All participating agencies have completed an initial HCTC baseline self-assessment, and are now trialling a ‘HCTC Implementation and Resource/Training Guide’ being developed by the Project Coordinator to assist them to undertake a self-assessment gap analysis and develop an Implementation Action Plan. A HCTC Peer Support and Learning Network has also been formed and an online ‘Basecamp’ set up to facilitate the sharing of information, resources and ideas amongst the pilot agencies.
Pilot agencies will provide feedback on the HCTC Implementation Guide and, towards the end of the project, undertake a re-assessment to gauge their progress towards implementation of the HCTC Framework. After the feedback has been analysed and the project evaluation process is complete, the Guide will be adapted and improved so that it can be used by other agencies across Gippsland to implement the HCTC Framework themselves.
Expressions of interest for partners wanting to be involved in phase 2 of this project are underway.