Are you finding it difficult to control worries about the virus? Download our guides to help you reduce and stress and anxiety. We have also provided guides from the World Health Organisation for adults and children.

If you or a loved one are feeling unsure or overwhelmed, you can also call our

free 24/7 national Anxiety Helpline on 0800 269 4389 (0800 ANXIETY).

Anxiety NZ Coronavirus guide screenshot.
WHO Coronavirus guide adults screenshot.
Anxiety NZ Covid19 Challenge screenshot.
WHO Coronavirus guide kids
Living with worry and anxiety amidst glo
Welfare-AOG-Factsheet screenshot.png
Essential Workers Wellbeing Advice - scr


Here are a list of numbers you can use any time to seek advice or support. If you are worried about someone you can call to ask for help.


- Free call or text 1737 any time for support from a trained counsellor. 
- Lifeline 0800 543 354 or (09) 522 2999 
Free text 4357 (HELP)
- Youthline 0800 376 633
- Samaritans 0800 726 666

- If you or someone you know is at risk of harm: dial 111 or visit your nearest hospital emergency department. 

- Call 0800 611 116 for your nearest DHB Mental Health Crisis Team (CATT Team).


If you’re having thoughts of suicide, you are not alone. This resource from The Mental Health Foundation offers clues, tohu and suggestions for how to make your way out of the bleakness or pain you’re experiencing. You won’t always feel like this. You can download a free book about 'Having Suicidal Thoughts and Finding a Way Back" here > 

Taiohi/young people know suicide is a big issue in Aotearoa, and they know it affects most of us in some way. They may come across it through the media, they may know someone who has died by suicide or be supporting a friend who is feeling suicidal. They may have had thoughts of suicide themselves.

Although it can feel hard to kōrero/talk about the tough stuff, it’s important that we can all have safe, open, honest and compassionate kōrero about suicide so our taiohi feel heard, supported and understood.

The Connecting Through Kōrero guidebook and videos are for parents, caregivers, teachers, counsellors, aunties, uncles, friends and other whānau members - anyone who cares about taiohi and needs tautoko/support and guidance to kōrero with them about suicide. Watch the video(s) that best suit your situation and read through the sections below, and see the Mental Health Foundation's Useful Resources page for additional information. Download the free Connecting Through Kōrero guidebook here >

If you are concerned that taiohi in your life may be having thoughts of suicide right now, this resource will not be useful to you. Instead visit the Mental Health Foundation's Worried about someone webpage for more information.

Written with extensive consultation with Māori suicide prevention experts, whānau and communities, Tihei Mauri Ora: Supporting whānau through suicidal distress will help whānau and friends to support someone who is in distress or crisis. It features information about warning signs to look out for, how to handle a crisis and explores ways to support loved ones struggling with suicidal thoughts and feelings. to download a free copy visit here >

Connection, a sense of belonging and working together are crucial for the wellbeing of all individuals, whānau and communities. Formerly known as Supporting Families NZ, Yellow Brick Road is a national organisation that provides support for whānau who have a loved one experiencing mental health challenges. 


"What Happens Now?" - this information is a suicide prevention factsheet intended for people who have survived a suicide attempt and their whānau, family and friends. To download for free visit here >

After hearing about the suicide of someone you love or someone close to you, the first days can seem like a blur. There is a lot of information to take in, difficult decisions to make and hard things to deal with.  You may also have many questions – not all of them will be possible to answer, so we offer practical information and a guide for you at this difficult time. After a suicide - information for family and friends is a website with information and resources for family, whānau, and friends.


Download our 40 page Information Booklet in PDF format which can be viewed on screen or printed. Much of what is found on this website is also available in this booklet however the booklet contains some additional information. Click on the image below to download.

Booklet centure spread.png


We also provide a leaflet with a brief outline of the services we provide, what to expect and how to get the most out of treatment. Click on the image below to download.


Printed copies of this flyer are available upon request.

Anxiety Helpline flyer v2 screenshot.png





Initial Contact

We first need a referral from your GP, mental health practitioner, counsellor, nurse, or other mental health specialist. Please talk to us if you have any problems with getting a referral as we may be able to accept a self-referral.


You may be able to call your GP’s reception and ask for a referral without making an appointment. In some cases your health professional may ask to see you first before they write one. We may accept an existing and recent mental health referral if a copy is sent to us. Referrals can be:


– Photographed or scanned and emailed to

– Posted to: Anxiety NZ, 77 Morningside Drive, St Lukes, Auckland.

– Submitted via HealthLink (most GP practices can do this)

– Or dropped off in person to: Anxiety NZ, 77 Morningside Drive, St Lukes, Auckland.

– Faxed to: 09 849 2375

If you are a health care professional you can go to our referral form here >

Once your referral has been arrived we aim to contact you within the week. You can call us anytime to follow up. Occasionally it may take longer depending on when the referral has been sent in i.e. over the weekend or public holidays.  Once your referral has been processed we will go through a few steps with you including:

– A needs assessment

– A psychiatric assessment

– Treatment options.



Who do you see / what clients do you take?

We treat anyone regardless of age or gender who may be experiencing anxiety, depression, and/or associated conditions.

If we feel that another service may better fit your primary difficulty, for instance alcohol and drugs, we may refer you on to another service, to ensure you get the best possible care. We are also not a wraparound service and cannot provide appropriate support for high risk clients, who should be referred to appropriate services. If you are in a crisis or immediate danger, please call 111.

Do you provide medical services?

We have a GP specialist. Dr Plant is a GP who has trained in mental health and can prescribe medication.

What is the difference between a psychiatrist, a psychologist and a psychotherapist?

Psychiatrists are medical doctors who have completed further training in mental illness. They are trained in assessment and diagnosis of mental disorders and can prescribe medication. Psychologists cannot prescribe medication.

Psychologists have usually trained for 6-8 years and have a masters or doctorate in psychology with an arts or science background. They are trained in assessment and intervention through talk therapy. They typically use a structured approach.

Psychotherapists tend to deal with longer term therapy for deep-rooted issues such as childhood trauma or relationship problems. Psychotherapy is a less structured intervention and is focused more around dialogue and your childhood.

How many sessions will I need?

Each treatment session is for 50 minutes. As part of your treatment plan, your Clinician will discuss with you how regularly and for how long you will need to come in.

What happens in therapy?

There is a range of treatment options and your clinician will work with you to create an effective individualised treatment plan. However for the majority of our clients and patients, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is the most effective treatment that leads to life-long management of Anxiety Disorders. CBT is a structured, short-term from of therapy, encouraging patients to challenge distorted thinking and unhelpful patterns by modifying emotions, behaviours, and thoughts.

Can I bring my family?

We do not provide family therapy, however you are welcome to bring a support person to your session.

What can I do to prepare for my first session?  

The first session is a chat to get to know what is bringing you to the service. You may want to consider what information you feel is important for your psychologist to know. Some clients even bring in timelines they have written up, or reports from other health professionals.

You may also consider what you want to know. Don’t be afraid to ask questions at any point.

Finally, it’s also a good idea to think about what you want to get out of therapy before meeting with your therapist. It is likely that you and your therapist will discuss goals for therapy.

How can I get the most out of therapy?

Attend regular appointments as and when recommended, and take any medication as and when instructed by your doctor. Ensure you complete the home activities that your clinician and you agree on. Be realistic and patient about your progress – recovery takes time, try not to put added pressure on yourself to be healed immediately.

Please let us know if you are unable to attend your appointment – any cancellations must be done with a minimum of 24 hours’ notice, or a late cancellation fee may apply.

Is my information kept private?

We assure complete confidentiality to all of our clients. Exceptions to this are if there is a safety or legal issue with regard to the client or others. In this case under our Duty of Care commitment we would aim to discuss the issue with the client and as necessary contact the relevant support services. 


We’ve outlined brief descriptions of conditions below. If you would like more detailed information, please download a comprehensive descriptions brooklet here >


Anxiety: Moderate to severe anxiety disorders are the most common psychiatric illnesses affecting children and adults. Feeling anxious to some degree is normal for everyone. Anxiety and fear are adaptive and helpful emotions which allows us to notice danger, keeps us safe and helps us adapt to our environment. However sometimes anxiety levels can become severe or longstanding and beyond our abilities to cope, which can pose a risk to our mental and physical health. It can also cause significant distress or impair your ability to function in important areas of life such as work, school, or relationships.

Depression: Depression is a condition in which a person feels discouraged, sad, hopeless, unmotivated, or disinterested in life in general for more than two weeks and when the feelings interfere with daily activities. Major depression is a treatable illness that affects the way a person thinks, feels, behaves, and functions.


Panic Attacks: The abrupt onset of intense fear or discomfort that reaches a peak within minutes and includes at least four of the following symptoms: Palpitations, pounding heart, or accelerated heart rate. Sweating. Trembling or shaking. Sensations of shortness of breath or smothering.


Panic Disorder: Characterized by reoccurring unexpected panic attacks. Panic attacks are sudden periods of intense fear that may include palpitations, sweating, shaking, shortness of breath, numbness, or a feeling that something really bad is going to happen.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD): Repeated and persistent thoughts ("obsessions") that typically cause distress and that an individual attempts to alleviate by repeatedly performing specific actions ("compulsions").

Agoraphobia: Excessive fear related to being in (or anticipating) situations where escape might be difficult or help may not be available if panic attack (or panic-like symptoms) occur i.e. bridges, motorways, flying, lifts, etc.


Separation Anxiety Disorder: Excessive anxiety concerning separation from home or major attachment figures that is beyond what would be expected for one's developmental level. This can occur in children, adolescents, or adults, but is more commonly found in children.


Selective Mutism: A rare disorder characterised by a persistent failure to speak in certain social situations (e.g., with playmates or in the classroom), despite engagement in speaking in other situations.


Social Anxiety Disorder (Social Phobia): Excessive fear of becoming embarrassed or humiliated in social situations, which often leads to significant avoidance behaviours. School Phobia The sudden aversion to or fear of attending school.


Mono or Specific Disorders: Persistent and excessive fear of a specific object or situation, such as flying, heights, animals, toilets, or seeing blood. Fear is cued by the presence or anticipation of the object/situation and exposure to the phobic stimulus results in an immediate fear response or panic attack.


Health Anxiety or Hypochondriasis: A fear of having, or belief that one has a serious health issue or disease.


Generalised Anxiety Disorder: An anxiety disorder characterised by chronic anxiety, exaggerated worry and tension, even when there is little or nothing to provoke it.


Depersonalisation Disorder: An experience of feeling detached from and as if one is an outside observer of one’s mental processes or body.


Body Dysmorphic Disorder: A preoccupation with an imagined defect in appearance, often co-morbid with depression and/or social phobia.


Eating Disorders: An eating disorder is a compulsion to eat, or avoid eating, that negatively affects both one's physical and mental health.


Panic Disorder Recurring: Panic attacks in combination with significant behavioural change or ongoing worry about having other attacks.


Kleptomania: A complex disorder characterised by repeated, unsuccessful attempts to stop stealing.


Trichotillomania: The inability or difficulty to resist the urge to pluck one’s own hair, resulting in noticeable hair loss.


Dermotillomania: Repetitive skin picking of one's own skin that may result in lesions. Many individuals will experience shame about the behaviour and/or attempt to conceal the resulting lesions with clothing or makeup.


Compulsive Gambling: Frequent preoccupation with gambling or having money to gamble.


Trauma and Stressor Related Disorders: Disorders that are related to the experience of a trauma (e.g., unexpected death of a loved one, a car accident, combat, or a violent incident) or stressor (e.g., divorce, beginning University, moving).



Anxiety New Zealand Trust are committed to improving Māori health nationwide. New Zealand Government has accepted a significant need for change and investment into the mental health and addiction system is required as recommended in He Ara Oranga here >.


Anxiety NZ acknowledges that current inequities are not acceptable and recognises its ongoing responsibilities to Māori and works to continue to support implementation recommended by He Ara Oranga.

Anxiety NZ acknowledges the principles identified through WAI 2575 (Health Services and Outcomes Inquiry) of: Guarantee of Tino Rangatiratanga, Equity, Active Protection, Options and Partnership.


Anxiety NZ understands that far broader changes to the health and disability sector are to come, Pūrongo Whakamutunga here >.

Whakamaua: Māori Health Action Plan 2020-2025 sets the government’s direction for Māori health advancement over the next five years. Whakamaua presents new opportunities for the Ministry, the health and disability system, and the wider government to make considerable progress in achieving Māori health equity, visit here >

You can download a copy of our Māori Health Policy And Plan in PDF format here >

He āwhina, he aroha ngā miro tuitui i ngā haehaetanga a te mate.

Love and support knit together the lacerations of anguish.


Professor Tipene-Leach says improving equity of health outcomes in Aotearoa requires first that we acknowledge that racism exists and that current inequities are not acceptable.

“Colonisation and systemic racism has had a significant effect on health outcomes and we need to understand that inequity is deep-seated in our society, it is complex and it can impact on patient engagement in their health care and the choices they make”,

Professor David Tipene-Leach

The Medical Council of New Zealand, in partnership with Te Ohu Rata O Aotearoa (Te ORA), has released an independent research report outlining findings on the current state of cultural safety and health equity delivered by doctors in Aotearoa New Zealand here >


Search for Kaupapa Māori Health Services here >

Hearts and Minds Directory of services for Māori visit here >

For COVID-19 services and resources for whānau in Tamaki Makaurau visit here >

Kaupapa Māori Health, Mental Health and Social Services in Christchurch for a range of services at no cost for all ages visit here >

Māori Mental Health Services in Christchurch visit here >

Find free local District Health Board (DHB) Services by region  here >


Te Reo Hāpai: The Language of Enrichment, a Māori language glossary for use in the mental health, addiction and disability sectors is here >

Kaupapa Māori Best Practice Framework: Kaupapa Māori mental health and addiction services are an indigenous response to effectively meeting the mental health and/or addiction needs of tangata visit here >

Kaupapa Māori Models Of Psychological Therapy & Mental Health Services. A Literature Review visit here >



Motu e va’a e taha. ‘Oku ongo katoa ia ki ke fu’u akau”; When one branch breaks the whole tree feels it. Tongan proverb.

Talking with your children about mental health or addiction issues can help them make sense of changes they see in the family and whānau. Without support, your children will try to make sense of these changes on their own. Talking with them will reduce their confusion.


You need to tell them enough to reduce their concerns about your issues and how you are being supported – and they need to know that they aren’t to blame. You might be worried that talking about your issues with your children will burden them. In fact, many parents say that their children are reassured to learn about why things might be ‘different’ and that their parents are taking steps to manage the issues. For advice around this visit here >

Plan for Caring for Children: Being a parent is an important role. This plan helps everyone support the children, family and whānau of people who are parents and who also use mental health or addiction services.


If children need care due to a parent’s illness or time in respite/rehab/hospital, it is good to record the wishes of everyone involved ahead of time. The plan is about being prepared and talking through possible processes and issues – the plan may never have to be used.

Parents want the best for their children and these guidelines provide all mental health and addiction services, adult and child services alike, with the mandate to work in a family-focused way to help parents achieve this. These guidelines help to ensure that the wellbeing of children is everyone’s responsibility, not just infant, child and adolescent services. 

Other useful links:

COPMI website.

Information for children and young people, Werry Centre.

Oranga Tamariki Resources

Resilience – the biology of stress and the science of hope.

Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP) Position Statement 2016

Werry Centre videos and resources



Supporting parents with mental illness and or addiction and their children –download a government guideline for mental health and addiction services and access links to plans and other resources here >




Here are some resources that may be helpful for caregivers of children and young people:

Information Fact sheets visit here >

Understanding child development: Ages 0-3 years visit here >

Ages 1 - 5 and metal heath issues visit here >

Ages 6 - 12 mental health issues visit here >

Autism Spectrum disorder information visit here >

Resource Tool Kits for Caregivers visit here >


Supporting parents of 4-8-year-old children with mild to moderate anxiety visit here >

Supporting parents of pre-teen children with mild-moderate anxiety visit here >


If you have child who is experiencing anxiety, try some of the breathing and action techniques below.


Fill a glass to halfway with water or your child’s favourite drink (we always encourage a healthy sugar free drink of water or milk). Place a straw in the glass and ask your child to take a deep belly breath (see Belly Breathing exercise for how to do this) and hold for 3 seconds, then blow into the straw slowly through their mouth. Repeat this 5 – 10 times (or as many as your child needs to feel less anxious).


Belly Breathing

Place on your child’s hands on their chest and one on their belly. Breathe in through the nose for half their age in seconds, hold for half their age in seconds and breathe out for their full age in seconds. This methods works well up to age 8. The structure would be: – 4 seconds breathing in, hold for 4s and out for 8. If your child or young person is over 8, use the following: – 4 seconds breath in, hold for 5 and breathe out for 8. (adjust this as per the needs of the child or young person).


Robots, Jellyfish and Towers

The aim of this game is to practice progressive muscle relaxation. You call out each of these names and your child mimics the behaviour of each one: – Robots, who are stiff and robotic in their movements. – Jellyfish, who are floppy and relaxed. – Towers, which are strong and stretch up high into the sky. The game begins with each person cycling through the actions a couple times. Try to keep mixing the order of the names up and ensuring there’s a jellyfish movement after the tense movements.



Families play an important role in the recovery journey of people experiencing mental illness. Whānau / Family can refer to anyone who supports or cares for a person experiencing mental illness. When someone you love is experiencing mental illness it can feel like an emotional rollercoaster and a challenge for you, your relationships and your family.


Acceptance, love and boundary setting can be pivotal in helping a loved one recover. Denial, disapproval, blame and judgement is likely to worsen the situation. As family / whānau there is a lot you can do to help. It’s important to keep your self-care as a priority in order do to your best for your loved one. 

We have outlined the main points to consider below. You can download a help-sheet with full details of each point:

 Practice Self-Care

 Resource yourself 

 Be patient 

 Stay in touch 

 Be persistently kind 

 Be positive 

 Start conversations and not conflict 

 Make sure you have resources 

 Find a support network and keep it active 

Help resources for parents, family and friends

Commonground – a website hub providing parents, family, whānau and friends with access to information, tools and support to help a young person who is struggling.

Parent Help – 0800 568 856 for parents/whānau seeking support, advice and practical strategies on all parenting concerns. Anonymous, non-judgemental and confidential.

Family Services Helpline –  0800 211 211 for help finding (and direct transfer to) community based health and social support services in your area.

Skylight – 0800 299 100 for support through trauma, loss and grief; 9am–5pm weekdays.

Yellow Brick Road (formerly Supporting Families) –  For families and whānau supporting a loved one who has a mental illness. Auckland 0800 732 825. Find other regions' contact details here.



Anxiety New Zealand Trust is part of the 'Equally Well' initiative which consists of a group of people and organisations with the common goal of reducing physical health disparities between people who experience mental health and addiction conditions, and people who don’t.

People with mental health and addiction conditions tend to have worse physical health than their counterparts in the general population, and a shorter life expectancy. Diabetes, cardiovascular disease, metabolic syndrome, cancer and oral health issues are more common for this population group.

This initiative is led by Te Pou o te Whakaaro Nui – a national centre of evidence based workforce development for the mental health, addiction and disability sectors in New Zealand. You can find out more on the Te Pou o te Whakaaro Nui website.


As part of a holistic approach to managing your experiences with anxiety, depression, OCD and phobia – maintaining healthy relationships, an intake of healthy food and regular exercise will create noticeable benefits and improvements to your ongoing mental state. We've outline a few points below, which may seem obvious at first, but it's worth reminding ourselves from time to time.


If you are in a relationship, a partner who understands your condition and supports you is vital. As always, discussions with partners regarding your condition should be approached as an open and positive conversation. Accept that often the people around you won't have a complete understanding of your symptoms or their causes. Education, information and patience will be your most powerful tools to help them help you. If your partner struggles to understand your condition, you can refer them to the section above on Whānau / Family, or they may wish to take part in one of our workshops for Whānau / Family. See more here.

Abusive relationships or partners who have substance abuse issues should be avoided if possible. If not, they should also seek help. Drug Alcohol Helpline: 0800 787 797

Shine, help for domestic violence: 0508 744 633

Diet / healthy eating

It may seem obvious to some, but a healthy balanced diet can have significant effects on your general mood and have a positive impact on your recovery. Fresh fruit and vegetables making up your 'five-a-day', fresh home cooked meals and healthy drinks will significantly help your recovery. An excess of fast food, fried food, high sugar content snacks, highly processed foods and alcohol should be avoided. If your diet currently contains many of these foods, try a healthier diet for just few days and you will likely experience a positive change in your mood and mental state. A guide to healthy eating as it relates to mental health issues can be downloaded here and is provided by


Often it can seem like the easiest most relaxing thing to do when you experience anxiety, depression or other mental health issues is to stay indoors, or lie on the couch with a film. But research has shown that even moderate exercise produces 'endorphins' – or in other words the brain's natural 'happiness' chemicals. 

Regular exercise at a level you feel comfortable with is important and can play a big part on your journey of recovery. Find an activity that you enjoy, which could be as simple as running, walking or tennis and you will soon notice the benefits. For more advice and information regarding exercise and mental health issues, you can download a PDF provided by




Anxiety New Zealand Trust (also known as Anxiety NZ or Anxiety NZ Trust or ANZT) is a non-profit charity (CC20141) and Incorporated under the Charitable Trust Act 1957 (341218) providing services to support and improve the mental health of people and communities across Aotearoa.


This agreement sets forth the terms and conditions which apply to the use by you of the Anxiety New Zealand Trust site and any other subscription product or service offered for loan or sale on the interactive online service operated by the Anxiety New Zealand Trust.

The information available on or through this website is intended to provide general information to the public, and is not intended to address specific circumstances of any particular individual or entity. All reasonable measures have been taken to ensure the quality and accuracy of the information available on this website please email

Those accessing this website are advised:

  1. Anxiety New Zealand Trust makes no warranty, express or implied, nor assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, correctness, completeness or use of any information that is available on or through this website.

  2. The information on this website may be changed, deleted, added to, or otherwise amended without notice.

  3. Anxiety New Zealand Trust is not responsible for the content of other websites linked to, or referenced from, this website. Anxiety New Zealand Trust neither endorses the information, content, presentation, or accuracy of such other websites, nor makes any warranty, express or implied, regarding these other websites.

  4. Nothing contained on this website is, or shall be relied on as, a promise or representation by Anxiety New Zealand Trust

  5. The contents of this website should not be construed as legal or professional advice and visitors to this website should take specific advice from qualified professional people before undertaking any action following information received from this website.

  6. Any reference to any specific commercial product, process, or service by trade name, trademark, manufacture, or otherwise does not constitute an endorsement or recommendation by Anxiety New Zealand Trust.

  7. Each page on this website must be read in conjunction with this disclaimer and any other disclaimer that forms part of it.

Those accessing this website who ignore this disclaimer do so at their own risk.



Everyone at Anxiety NZ plays a part in helping develop and promote a culture in which personal information is protected and respected. Please read our Privacy Police here>.


Anxiety NZ's website has links to third party websites and resources. Anxiety NZ is not responsible or liable for the availability or accuracy of any such link or resources, or for the content, products, or services on or available from such websites of resources. Links to such website do not imply any indorsement from Anxiety New Zealand Trust. Visitors to Anxiety New Zealand Trust's website assume all risk arising from their use of any link to third party websites or resources. 


Anxiety NZ welcomes your insights or comments. Please email

Please contact your Health Professional or Healthline 0800 611 116 for personal health advice.

If you or someone you know is at risk of harm call the crisis service 0800 900 717 or dial 111 for urgent health advice or in an emergency. 



The Code of Health and Disability Services Consumers’ Rights sets out ten rights that you have as a health consumer which must be followed by anyone providing any sort of health or disability service.


The Code applies to all health services and disability support services in New Zealand, whether you have paid for them or they are free of charge and include hospitals, doctors, nurses, homeopaths, diagnostic services, special needs assessors etc.

The purpose of the Code is to protect your rights as a health consumer and to help resolve any complaints you may have if you feel those rights have not been protected. The full list of ten rights can be found in detail on the Health & Disability Commissioner website.

HDC Advocacy Brochure >

HDC Code of Rights guide >
HDC Code of Rights in Māori guide >

The Advocacy Service - a free and independent service

The Nationwide Health and Disability Advocacy Service is a free service that operates independently from all health and disability service providers, government agencies and HDC. If you want to know more about your rights when using health or disability services, get questions answered, or make a complaint, we can help. 

Freephone: 0800 555 050 


Peer Support Group

Group Guidelines and Goals PDF >

What happens to your information guide ≥



Family Whānau Participation in Service Planning Implementation and Delivery Policy >

Service User Participation in Service Planning Implementation & Delivery Policy >



Anxiety New Zealand Trust is committed to providing a quality service and respects your rights as a consumer and individual. While we strive to meet your expectations, we acknowledge that from time to time there may be dissatisfaction with the service provided. We view this as an opportunity to improve our services.

Complaint can be made:

  • Directly from a service user and/or their family/whānau.

  • Through the Health and Disability Commissioners office.

  • Through the Privacy Commissioners office.

  • By a member of parliament.

  • Through Consumer Advocates.

  • By a service provider.

  • By a member of the public.


Complaints may be made verbally, or in writing, to any member of staff. You will be advised within 5 working days, in writing, of the contact details of the Privacy Commissioner, The Health and Disability Commissioner, the District Inspector of Mental Health and Advocacy Services, and you can contact any of these services at any time. 

All complaints will be given to the Chief Executive Officer. Should the complaint relate to the Chief Executive Officer then to the Chairman of the Trust Board. The Chief Executive Officer / Chairman will decide how the complaint will be investigated and resolved and inform the complainant of the complaint process.

The complaint may be discussed on the telephone, or an appointment made for this purpose, as required by your needs. The discussion will establish details of the complaint, and the requested remedy.


The Chief Executive Officer / Chairman will undertake such investigation as they deem appropriate, within twenty working days of the discussion above, and prepare a written response. The response and any associated report including any proposed action, will be shared with you verbally if requested or in writing, within three weeks. If the complaint is resolved it will be closed and any recommendations implemented by the Trust. 


Should the investigation require more time, the investigation time will be extended for up to a further twenty working days to investigate the complaint and you will be informed of the outcome within this time.

Should you not find the response acceptable, you can approach the Anxiety New Zealand Trust for a resolution. You will be contacted within one week for further information and informed within ten working days of an outcome.


Should the matter still not be resolved then, by mutual consent, the matter will be settled by binding arbitration, referred to HDC, the Privacy Commissioner or re-investigated by the Trust.

Contact Details for the Privacy Commissioner, The Health and Disability Commissioner, the District Inspector of Mental Health and Advocacy Services:

The Advocacy Service - a free and independent service.

The Nationwide Health and Disability Advocacy Service is a free service that operates independently from all health and disability service providers, government agencies and HDC. If you want to know more about your rights when using health or disability services, get questions answered, or make a complaint, we can help. Freephone: 0800 555 050   Email:

Useful links:

HDC Rights - Your rights when using a health or disability service in New Zealand and how to make a complaint.

HDC Rights (Maori) Ōu whāinga tika ina whakamahi koe i tētahi ratonga hauora, ratonga hauā rānei i Aotearoa, ā, me pēhea te whakatakoto whakapae.

HDC Rights in Different Languages.

District Inspector of Mental Health and Advocacy Services.

Information on Making Complaints PDF download