Our Helpline gives vital support people of any age who experience all forms of anxiety, including Panic Attacks, Phobias and Obsessive Compulsive Disorders and to family or friends supporting someone with anxiety. 


If you're feeling anxious and would like to talk to someone about anxiety or would like to seek advice for a friend or family member - you can phone our free 24/7 Anxiety Helpline wherever you are in Aotearoa. Wāea mai ki a mātau. Give us a call.

0800 269 4389 (0800 ANXIETY)

This service is completely confidential and free of charge. It is the only service of its type in Aotearoa. Download our Helpline info pack for more details.

Who will I be talking to?

Our Helpline is staffed by specially trained and understanding volunteers. If you are experiencing anxiety or panic and don't know what to do, our helpline staff are well equipped to walk and talk you through the experience.

What do we provide?:
– We will listen and support you with empathy and unconditioned acceptance.
– We can take you through breathing and relaxation exercises that are really effective in minimising feelings of anxiety and panic.
– We can discuss practical strategies you can learn and apply whenever anxiety and panic starts to feel overwhelming.

- Please note we are not a counselling line - we offer encouragement, education, and advice for anyone who is supporting someone struggling with anxiety.

Please remember to call 111 in more urgent situations.

Download a Helpline and Crisis Numbers list for Families & Whanau here >



- 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).



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.

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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.

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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.



You may be eligible to access government funding for part or all of your treatment with us. When we phone to make your first appointment, make sure you tell us that you need Work and Income or StudyLink funding. You will need some signed paperwork from us which you will need to take into Work and Income or StudyLink or upload to their portal. It's important to know that the person using the service is responsible for any amount owing that isn't covered by the government. 

We've outlined the different groups who may meet funding criteria below.

Any Child May Access Funding

A caregiver may receive $42 per week towards the cost of therapy. It doesn't matter what the caregiver's income is. You may get a Child Disability Allowance if:

–  you are the main carer of the child (or if there is no main carer, you have care of the          child for the time being)

you are a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident

– The child has been assessed as meeting the criteria - anxiety or other disability                 seriously affecting them for a period of 12 months or more.

– The child or young person is under 18.

Work and Income

You may receive some funding if you earn less than a certain amount per week (see the earnings threshold at the below) and are:

– A part-time worker or a low income earner.
– Have no income.

– On a benefit.

– A retiree on a pension or superannuation.

*Please note that service users are responsible for ensuring that funding is arranged, and payment for services is fully completed. Funding is an agreement between a client and WINZ or Studylink.  Any amount remaining at the conclusion of therapy must be settled by the service user. Anxiety NZ may assist with providing and signing paperwork and providing quotes or recommendations for the need for therapy. 

Disability Allowance

Disability Allowance does not necessarily mean you have to be physically disabled to receive funding - if your mental health condition is stopping you doing the things you want to do, may qualify to receive funding if you are:

– 18 years or older (it doesn’t matter if you live with your parents) then if you are a low income earner you may be able to get funding for therapy.
– 16 – 17 years old and living independently or with a partner you may access funding if you are a low income earner.
– Under 18 and living with a caregiver then your caregiver may access funding for your treatment if your caregiver is a low income earner.

– Below the weekly income limit.

– Normally live in New Zealand and intend to stay here.

– Are not using the maximum DA of $63.22 per week for other health needs, and have not had more than 30 funded counselling appointments, either here or elsewhere. 

StudyLink Assistance for students

Students may also access funding via StudyLink for New Zealand citizens. You must be:​

– A full-time tertiary student.

International students

In most cases are fully funded through their pre-arranged travel insurance cover. The process is straight forward and we will help. Insurance is often paid as part of their AUT / University fee and many students are unaware they can access treatment they require at no cost. Pre-existing conditions will be excluded.

Insurance Companies

You will need to check you are funded before seeing us. Depending on your insurance cover you may be funded, although not all insurance contracts cover the cost of doctors OR psychologists. Southern Cross may need you to see our Clinical Psychologist (instead of our general or health psychologists). Please make sure you tell us if you have insurance. 

Earnings thresholds at 1st April 2020

Category and Weekly income limits before tax

Single 16-17 years – $549.57

Single 18+ years – $676.61

Married, civil union or de facto couple (with or without children) – $1006.82

Sole parent 1 child – $766.47

Sole parent 2+ children – $807.54

Benefit type and Weekly rate, non-taxable

Standard Disability Allowance - maximum – $65.36

Special Disability Allowance – $40.77

Child Disability Allowance  – $49.26

*You may be eligible to receive funding if you earn less than these amounts before tax.





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 >



By region:


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 >



Anxiety New Zealand Trust, along with government, 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.



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

Supporting Parents, Healthy Children, MOH, 2015.

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 >



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.


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

Copyright © 2020 Anxiety New Zealand Trust

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