Updating Accident Compensation Hearing Assessment Regulations

closed
Submissions closed: 14 September 2022, 5pm

MBIE is consulting on proposed updates to the ACC Hearing Assessment Regulations, which outline the process by which providers must undertake assessments for gradual process hearing assessment claims.

About the Accident Compensation Hearing Assessment Regulations

The Accident Insurance (Occupational Hearing Assessment Procedures) Regulations 1999 (the Hearing Assessment Regulations) describe the procedures that claimants must undergo for a gradual process hearing test.

MBIE has completed work on determining whether the Hearing Assessment Regulations require updating, to match new scientific evidence. This included considering the age scale contained in Schedule 2 of the Hearing Assessment Regulations. The age scale attributes a proportion of hearing loss to ageing which is taken off from a claimants total assessed hearing loss to determine the injury related portion.

The current age scale for hearing loss is based on the 1988 National Acoustic Laboratories (NAL) report table, which is in turn based on the ISO 7029:1984 standard. A new international standard has since been developed (ISO 7029:2017). MBIE is recommending the age scale be updated based on the new standard.

Objectives for assessing the proposal

The policy objectives for assessing the proposed options are:

  • Entitlements are targeted at work-related hearing loss
  • Based on up-to-date scientific research
  • Consistent outcomes for claimants
  • Ease of implementation, and
  • Financial impact.

Consultation

We’re seeking your feedback on the proposed changes and the options you think will best meet the objectives. You can read more about this in the consultation document.

We are consulting on two primary options. Option 1 proposes no change to the age scale (the status quo). Option 2 proposes updating the age scale based on ISO 7029:2017.

We are also consulting on two other minor technical amendments to the Hearing Assessment Regulations:

  • Remove reference to tests conducted by otolaryngologists.
  • Update the reference to ISO 8253.1-2010 from AS ISO 8253.1-2009.

The feedback you provide to this consultation will help us develop advice for Ministers on what changes should be made to the Hearing Assessment Regulations.

We’re keen to hear from you about your preferred options and the impact of the proposed changes on the hearing assessment process.

We want to hear from providers, individuals and businesses impacted by the changes, and any other interested parties, on proposed changes to updating the Hearing Assessment Regulations.

Below is the consultation document to read and the submission template for you to complete if you would like to share your views with us. Feedback can also be given without using the template (but using the template is preferred).