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Audiological Society ensures hearing aid consumers protected

Audiological Society ensures hearing aid consumers protected

Auckland, June 24, 2015: The New Zealand Audiological Society (NZAS) through their code of ethics and robust complaints process, strives to ensure people are well served when they seek audiological services, purchase hearing instruments and support from their members.

The NZAS was incorporated in 1976 and it is a self-governing body representing more than 300 Audiologists in New Zealand. The Society has a Constitution, an elected Executive Council, a Code of Ethics, and an independent complaints procedure. Members of the Society are required to uphold the Society’s Code of Ethics.

The NZAS is concerned about the recent media coverage which indicated that War Veterans and older New Zealanders may be at risk of purchasing hearing devices and services that are neither required nor suitable. The NZAS considers the conduct described in the media as unacceptable and asks that the people mentioned in the article contact them as soon as possible so that a formal enquiry can take place.

The public needs to be aware that in New Zealand there is no restriction on who may sell hearing aids. Therefore some complaints are not about audiological services received from a member of the NZAS, but about a person who is not a member of the society.

The NZAS urges members of the public seeking audiological services to always ask their audiological provider if they are a member of the New Zealand Audiological Society. The NZAS publishes on their website (www.audiology.org.nz) details of all their current practicing members. Public can also look for the qualification “MNZAS CCC” after their name.

The public is also protected through the Health and Disability Act and can take a complaint to the Health and Disability Commissioner at any time.

The NZAS has sought registration of the profession of audiology a number of times since 1974. The NZAS has and will continue to lobby the Ministry of Health to restrict the sale of hearing aids, which are classed as medical devices, to ensure that only qualified and appropriately credentialled professionals may sell them as is the case in other countries. The Society would welcome the public’s support in this effort.

ENDS

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