The New Zealand Audiological Society promotes excellence in hearing care for all New Zealanders. If you feel you have received unsatisfactory service or that your audiologist or audiometrist has acted in an unprofessional or unethical manner, you can submit a formal complaint to the NZAS Complaints Board (Poari Whakapae).
Who can make a complaint?
Anyone can make a complaint to the NZAS Complaints Board. If the person who wishes to lodge a complaint is unable to do so themselves (e.g., they would find the process too stressful), a family member or other support person can act on their behalf.
Who can I make a complaint about?
The NZAS Complaints Board can only investigate complaints about NZAS members.
The complaint must identify a specific member (or members) of NZAS in order for the Complaints Board to investigate. The Board cannot investigate complaints about the company or practice that members are associated with.
When can I make a complaint?
Audiologists and audiometrists, or the company they work for, must have their own complaints procedure, so in the first instance we recommend that you try to work through the issues with them.
If you are unsatisfied with the way your initial complaint is handled, or you feel the complaint is of a serious nature, then submitting a formal complaint to the NZAS Complaints Board is your next step.
What can I make a complaint about?
The NZAS Complaints Board will consider and investigate the following complaints about its members:
- poor service (e.g., they have not done what they said they would, or have given you incorrect or incomplete information)
- failure to take into account the suitability of the devices prescribed (e.g. ease of use)
- failure to treat you with respect
- failure to provide you with sufficient information so you are able to make an informed choice about your treatment (e.g., information must be relevant and easy to understand)
- failure to maintain their professional independence failure to comply with any part of the NZAS Code of Ethics.
NZAS can only investigate complaints against its members, not the company or practice the member is associated with.
What if my hearing device is not working?
If you are experiencing issues with your hearing device you will need to contact your audiologist or audiometrist directly. If they do not take appropriate or reasonable action to resolve the situation, you can then submit a formal complaint to the NZAS Complaints Board for investigation.
How do I make a complaint?
You can contact NZAS on 0800 625 166, or email [email protected]
There is no fee to lodge a complaint, and no costs to the person making the complaint.
Who are the NZAS Complaints Board (Poari Whakapae)?
The Complaints Board members include a minimum of one consumer representative, two NZAS members, and a lawyer. Their role is to investigate complaints about alleged breaches of the NZAS Code of Ethics. They make the final decision on the outcome of the investigation and on any penalty, except in circumstances where the penalty is such that the Executive Council makes the final decision, for example, suspension of membership.
Review of Complaints Board Decisions
A member who has been the subject of a complaint investigation may request a review of the findings of the NZAS Complaints Board. Any request for a review must be made in writing within 20 working days of receipt of the final findings from the Complaints Board and must clearly state the grounds on which the review is sought. A decision on whether a review will be granted is at the discretion of the Executive Council. The grounds for a review and the review process is as set out in this Interim Policy.
The Interim Policy also allows the Executive Council to consider requests from complainants for a review of a decision on a case by case basis.
Consumers may also lodge complaints with the Health and Disability Commissioner (HDC). Please see the HDC website for more information: www.hdc.org.nz.