SSBA Newsletter Issue 17 - February 2012

Page last updated: February 2012

PDF printable version of SSBA Newsletter Issue 17 - February 2012 (PDF 142 KB)

Did you Know
Dealing with Emergency Facility Maintenance
Internal Review
Regular Report
Online Training Facility
Reporting Timeframes

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Did you know …

If you are a non-registered facility reporting the results of confi rmatory testing of a suspected SSBA that was undertaken by an external laboratory you should use the Non-Registered Facility Report and select Results of Confi rmatory Testing (from an external laboratory only) at the question 'What Are You Reporting'. Only select the 'a confi rmed SSBA' option if it arrived in your facility already having been confi rmed by laboratory testing (e.g. did not start out as a suspected SSBA). See the diagram below:

Diagram on Reporting Details

Above diagram
Reporting Details

What are you reporting
(Select as many as required)

"Select this option if you are reporting the results of confirmatory testing"

A new Suspected SSBA
Results of Confirmatory Testing (from an external laboratory only)

"Only select this option if you are reporting that you have received a known SSBA"

If you have any questions about how to handle or report suspected or confi rmed SSBAs please see Guideline 9 - Non-Registered Facility Reporting and Requirements, available on our web site or contact us at

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Dealing with emergency facility maintenance

In an emergency - such as when a freezer malfunction makes it necessary for an SSBA to be stored outside your facility's secure perimeter, or at a linked storage facility - at a minimum, you must:
  • notify the Department of Health and Ageing (DoHA) about the temporary storage arrangements (or register a new facility)
  • report to DoHA the transfer of the SSBA
  • restrict and record access to the temporary storage unit
  • consider the risk associated with the temporary storage arrangement.
NOTE: These arrangements should be temporary and the SSBA must be transferred into a registered or linked storage facility as soon as possible.

If your fi rst step is to transfer SSBA to another registered facility, you are only required to report the transfer of the SSBA.

Part 4 of the SSBA Standards deals with Physical Security and covers the perimeter and physical access controls. Under clause 4.2-Perimeter, facilities must have a clearly defi ned perimeter which must enclose the secure area where SSBAs are handled. Under Part 4A of the SSBA Standards facilities are able to register a linked storage facility for the storage of Tier 2 SSBAs (Tier 1 SSBAs must be stored within the secure perimeter defi ned under clause 4.2).

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Internal Review (SSBA Standards sub-clause 8.4.3)

Part 8 of the SSBA Standards covers the SSBA Management System Requirements. This includes policy, roles, responsibilities, authorities, checking and corrective action. Under sub-clause 8.4.3 Internal Review entities must conduct an internal review at planned intervals of no longer than six months for Tier 1 and 12 months for Tier 2 SSBAs. Internal reviews determine that operations carried out by the entity comply with both the requirements of the SSBA Regulatory Scheme and the entity's SSBA policies.

DoHA has developed the Internal Review Tool (IRT) to help entities and facilities when undertaking internal reviews. The facility can then use the IRT to show that the facility meets the requirements of the SSBA Standards. The IRT has questions (based on the requirements of the SSBA Standards) that are answered with simple Yes/No check boxes and room for comments. Each section also has questions about recommended practices and procedures.

Records of an internal review must be kept. They should include the fi ndings of the review, any non-compliance or improvement opportunities identifi ed and any actions that result from the fi ndings. The IRT can be used as a record that an internal review has taken place.

The use of the IRT is not mandatory and other methods or documents may be used to assist with compliance management. The IRT is available free of charge on our web site

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Regular Report

Facilities registered to handle SSBAs must submit a Regular Report to DoHA by 30 April 2012.

Facilities registered to handle Tier 1 SSBAs must submit a bi-annual report by 30 April 2012 for the period of 1 October 2011 to 31 March 2012. Facilities registered to handle Tier 2 SSBAs, must submit their annual report by 30 April 2012 for the period of 1 April 2011 to 31 March 2012.

Submitting an annual or biannual report is mandatory. If your entity or facility details have not changed during the reporting period please submit a 'nil' report. You may submit the Regular Report by using the webbased Data Collection System (DCS) or the paper-based form available on our website.

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Online Training

The Department of Health and Ageing (DoHA) developed the DoHA plans to enhance the system in 2012-13. This will enable users to review quiz responses before submission, access results for previously completed modules and streamline their feedback submission.

DoHA will provide further details when the OTF enhancements are complete. In the meantime, the OTF can be found at On your fi rst visit, you will have to set up a new user account. To do this, click on the new user fi eld (below the main log-in fi eld) and complete your user details. This includes your name, e-mail address (which will become your username), password details and registration key. The registration key is: SSBAOTF.

Once you have submitted these details, you will be sent an 'activation of account' e-mail (which could take up to 30 minutes). This e-mail will provide the link to the OTF. You can then log on to the system using your account details.

If you have any diffi culties establishing a user account or logging on to the system, please contact 02 6289 7477 or e-mail

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Reporting time frames

The time frame for taking action and reporting SSBA handling to the department is within two business days (the exception to this is the Regular Report). This time frame means that if you receive an SSBA or suspected SSBA on Monday you must take action (e.g. register to handle, transfer or destroy the SSBA) and report the action taken no later than close of business on Wednesday (Monday is considered the date of receipt and is therefore excluded in the two-business-day calculation). Similarly, if you receive an SSBA or suspected SSBA on Saturday you are not required to report or take action until close of business Wednesday (as the SSBA was received on Saturday, Monday is considered the date of receipt and is therefore excluded in the two-businessday calculation). During this time you must comply with the relevant parts of the SSBA Standards.

If you are required to retain an SSBA or suspected SSBA for longer than two business days, you can apply for an extension by completing the application for extension form. It is important to note that you are NOT required to seek an extension if you are required to hold a suspected SSBA for longer than two business days because you are waiting for the results of confi rmatory testing.