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Learn about the latest assistive technologies and support services that can be used to overcome barriers and enhance communication when hearing is limited.


This section also provides information on funding and subsidies that you can apply for if you are Deaf or hard of hearing.


Captioning services are rapidly improving as technology advances.


There is now a range of services and apps that can be used in meetings, conferences or during one-on-one conversations that can assist with communication.

1. In meetings

Ai Media

Ai Media is an online service that allows audio to be converted into text in real-time.

This is a great service for helping to make meetings and conferences more accessible.

Ai Live uses real people and not computers. The Ai captioning team connect through a direct phone call, a Zoom call or a live webinar. 


Conversations with a lot of participants are harder when you’re Deaf or hard of hearing. Ava allows each participant to connect to the application, so the person with a hearing loss can see what everyone says, with their name.

2. Person to person


RogerVoice is an app that generates subtitled calls through voice recognition. It makes transcripts of calls that can be reread later and makes calls in a language of choice. It also has the option to be able to type your response and have it converted to speech thanks to the speech synthesis function. Live transcription during phone calls.

Live Transcribe & Sound Notifications

It's an app that makes everyday conversations and surrounding sounds more accessible among people who are Deaf and hard of hearing, using just your Android phone.

3. On the phone


Transcribes voicemails and voice messages.

Listening to voice messages can be terribly inefficient and laborious. VoxSciences transcribes voice messages into text messages. This gives voice messages a quantum leap to join email, SMS and Instant Message.

4. Smartphone accessibility features

Smartphone Accessibility Features

To find out more about the accessibility features that you can take advantage of on your smartphone, and which model would best suit your needs check out the Global Accessibility Reporting Initiative (GARI).

GARI provides a comprehensive accessibility rating on a wide range of smartphone brands.

Amplified Sounds

There are many amplification technologies that assist a person to hear and understand what is being said more clearly or to express thoughts more easily.


With the development of digital and wireless technologies, more devices are becoming available to help people with hearing loss to communicate more meaningfully and participate more fully in their daily lives.

Bluetooth Streaming via Hearing Aids

Bluetooth functionality not only allows a person to receive the audio of a Bluetooth device directly into their hearing aids, but they are also able to control the sound of their hearing aids. This means that they can personalise the sound settings easily, depending on their circumstances.


To learn more about Bluetooth streaming for hearing aids click the button below.

1. Bluetooth Streaming via Hearing Aids

2. In Meetings / Conferences

FM Systems

FM systems are often used in boardroom meetings, where the speaker wears a small microphone connected to a transmitter and the team member with hearing loss wears the receiver, which is tuned to a specific frequency, or channel.


People who have a telecoil inside their hearing aid or cochlear implant may also be able to convert the signal into magnetic signals that can be picked up directly by the telecoil.


FM systems can be set up as personal systems, for large areas or even as a tour guide system, which can be useful for training and inductions.

Remote Microphones

The acoustics in conference rooms are often poor, and if the speaker is far away it’s even more challenging to hear them with a hearing loss. By placing a remote microphone closer to the person speaking, means team members with hearing loss will be able to hear them loud and clear in their hearing aids - without being affected by all the noise around the room or by the distance between them and the speaker.

Loop Systems

Some public places such as conference rooms, theatres, and public buildings have a teleloop installed. The teleloop works by sending out a wireless sound that is then received in the telecoil’s hearing aid, which allows the person to hear the sounds directly in their hearing aid. Teleloop is available wherever you see the icon displayed and is generally available in public places.


To learn more about installing a Loop System click the button below.

Roger Table Mic II

Roger Table Mic II is a microphone dedicated for working adults who participate in various meetings. It selects the person who’s talking and switches automatically between the meeting participants. Several Roger Table Mic II can be connected to create a network, making it ideal for large meeting configurations. It can also transmit the sound of multimedia e.g. computer. Learn more about the Roger Table Mic II by clicking the button below.

Roger Pens

Roger Pens are a handy microphone for various listening situations. They can be streamed directly into hearing aids with Bluetooth functionality. They are discrete, very portable and can be conveniently used where additional amplification is needed over distance and in noise.

3. In Everyday Settings

Sound Alert App

It’s hard to understand how important sound is to our everyday lives until hearing becomes difficult. Sounds like a ringing phone, beeping of the microwave, smoke alarms, and honking cars let us know what is going on around us and alert us to danger.

The Sound Alert app can be used as a second set of ears by converting any type of sound from your environment, Sound Alert can notify you by the power of visuals and vibrations to ensure your safety, security, and comfort.

Neo Sensory

Neo Sensory is a device you can wear on your wrist which captures the sound around you and translates it into rich vibrational patterns.


It helps you to hear alarm clocks, doorbells, dogs barking, and other sounds in your environment. It also translates voices, laughter and even enables people to feel the vibrational pattern of their name so that they can hear when people are trying to get their attention.

Sound Amplifier

Sound Amplifier enhances audio from your Android device, using headphones to improve listening clarity. Sound Amplifier makes audio more clear and easier to hear on your Android phone, therefore great to use in loud places like loud cafes and airports. It works by increasing quiet sounds and not over-boosting loud sounds. It has the ability to customise sound enhancement settings and apply noise reduction with simple slider and toggles. Sound Amplifier is compatible with Android 9 or later phones.

4. Options for Phones

Amplified Telephones

Amplified telephones look and work just like a normal phone but come with extra nifty features. These phones have a volume-boost button for louder voices, tone control for clearer voices, higher ringer volume, bright flashing lights when the phone rings, big buttons and ‘hearing aid compatibility’. Allowing the phone to work with any hearing aid that has a hearing loop (Telecoil) setting.


There are a range of telephones available through Deafquip.

Adjusting Your Smartphone

To find out more about the accessibility features that you can take advantage of on your smartphone, and which model would best suit your needs check out the Global Accessibility Reporting Initiative (GARI).

GARI provides a comprehensive accessibility rating on a wide range of smartphone brands.


An interpreter facilitates communication between people who do not share a language in common. Interpreters trained in NZSL convert what is said or signed into both spoken language and sign language.

NZSL interpreters in New Zealand are trained to interpret between spoken languages (mainly English and/or Māori) and NZSL.

Here you’ll find information about booking an interpreter should you need their services in your workplace.

Deaf Aotearoa New Zealand

Deaf Aotearoa New Zealand provides a number of nationwide services to support the Deaf community, including Deaf Awareness courses, and New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL) classes.


Deaf Aotearoa New Zealand also provides an NZSL interpreter service called iSign. It's a simple and easy way to book an interpreter.

WordsWorth Interpreting

WordsWorth Interpreting is a sign language interpreting agency providing connections between NZSL interpreters and the Deaf and hearing people who use them. Simply make a request for an interpreter and receive a confirmation from our team.


The Sign Language Interpreters Association of New Zealand are a national professional association which represents and advances the profession by informing members and consumers, and promoting high standards of practice and integrity in the field. They also assist with finding local interpreters in your area.

NZSL Board

The New Zealand Sign Language board provides a useful guide to working with NZSL interpreters

For advice on how to work with NZSL interpreters to ensure equitable access for Deaf people, including how to book one, and what your responsibilities are when booking NZSL interpreters click the button below.

Emergency Services

Accessing emergency services and being alerted to an emergency, such as a fire can be challenging for people who are Deaf or hard of hearing.

Fortunately, thanks to advances in technology hearing loss is no longer a barrier to being able to receive emergency assistance or to being alerted to emergencies.

Emergency Services 111 TXT

Do you have difficulty hearing or talking on the phone? New Zealand Emergency Services now offer an emergency service via text for people who are Deaf, hard or hearing or have a speech impediment. You do need to register in advance though.

Click below to learn more about the 111 TXT service for Fire, Ambulance or Police in an emergency.


Special Smoke Alarms

There are a number of specialised smoke alarm systems available for people who are Deaf or are hard of hearing. These alarms have extra features such as extra loud and/or lower pitch alarm sounds, flashing strobe lights, or vibrating devices.


These may be able to be fully funded if basic criteria are met. Contact Deaf Aotearoa NZ or Life Unlimited to start the process.

Wellbeing Support

If you are struggling with your hearing loss, there are many amazing organisations can help you find the emotional support you need. Sometimes the most courageous act we can make is to ask for help.

It can also help to connect with the Deaf and hard of hearing community and hearing from others who are going through similar experiences. NFDHH has a strong online community presence where we share inspirational stories and topical issues that matter to our community.

Need to talk?

Free call or text the number 1737, any time, for support from a trained counselor. 


Call Lifeline 0800 543 354 (0800 LIFELINE) to speak to qualified counselors and trained volunteers or contact a counselor via their text support service, text HELP (4357). 


Samaritans offer confidential, non-religious and non-judgemental support to anyone who may be feeling distressed. Call 0800 726 666 for a confidential chat or click the button below to access their website.

Connect with our Community

Join our online community, and connect with supportive members who understand what you’re going through.


Sharing how you feel, instead of keeping your feelings inside, can often make all the difference when you're feeling overwhelmed or isolated.

Hearing Therapy

Living with a hearing impairment can be stressful. It can lead to difficulties at work and affect communication with family and friends. It may also affect self-esteem and lead to social isolation.

A qualified hearing therapist will work with you to evaluate your hearing and make a plan with you to reach your hearing-related goals and reduce the impact of hearing loss on your daily life.

There are also a range of therapies you can access to help manage the symptoms of hearing loss, such as tinnitus.

Hearing Therapy

If you have a hearing loss, a qualified hearing therapist can work with you to evaluate your hearing and make a plan with you to reach your hearing-related goals and reduce the impact of hearing loss on your daily life.


Life Unlimited provides hearing therapy free of charge to people aged 16 years and over. 


The Coalition of Deaf Mental Health Professionals (CDMHP) are committed to advocating for the mental health wellbeing of the signing Deaf community. 


They can provide advice and link you to Deaf practitioners/advocates in the area. 

Learn more


Information regarding tinnitus should be first discussed with your doctor. Sometimes the cause can be treated medically by the GP, an otolaryngologist (ear, nose and throat specialist) or cardiovascular specialist. While there is no magical cure, there are many therapies that can minimise how much you experience the symptoms of tinnitus.

About Tinnitus

Tinnitus is the perception of noise, such as ringing, buzzing or clicking in your ears.

Everyone experiences tinnitus sporadically from time to time but usually the perceived noise is very brief. However, for around 15 – 20% of people the buzzing or ringing is permanent.

If the tinnitus is constant and intense it can be very unpleasant and can make it hard to concentrate or fall sleep and can also lead to anxiety or depression.

Having tinnitus does not necessarily mean a person is going deaf but it is a symptom that something has changed in your hearing system and could be an early sign of hearing loss.

Tinnitus usually occurs due to ageing or exposure to loud noise. The brain then tries to make sense of a change in your hearing system, by amplifying the change and therefore creating tinnitus.

Tinnitus can also be caused by head and neck injuries such as whiplash, or by an infection in the ear, stress, raised blood pressure, a drug side effect, surgery or because scuba diving pressure. In certain circumstances, the tinnitus can also be caused by excess ear wax.

It’s important to understand that most cases of tinnitus can’t be cured, only managed. Because of this, a medical professional such as an audiologist should diagnose it and help create a best approach going forward.

Tinnitus Support

Tinnitus is a ringing or buzzing noise in one or both ears that may be constant or come and go and is often linked to hearing loss. In most cases, tinnitus can't be cured but the symptoms can be managed.
Learn more about Tinnitus and the University of Auckland's Tinnitus Tunes therapy that can help to reprogramme the brain to minimise the impact to tinnitus. 

Tinnitus Tunes

Tinnitus Tunes is a Sound Therapy programme that was founded by Tom Donaldson and Dr. Grant Searchfield, two experts in the field of tinnitus at Auckland University.

Tinnitus Tunes was created with two main goals:

 1. To provide quality information about tinnitus based on clinical and research experience.

 2. To provide tinnitus therapy with a proven record of 15 years. Tinnitus Tunes’ therapy is based around Sound Therapy and Brain Retraining.​

When an individual first gets tinnitus, the brain tends to focus mostly on the tinnitus sound. Sound therapy uses sounds to improve tinnitus. It works by re-training the brain by means of increasing activity to the ear. This allows the brain to focus on other sounds mixed with the tinnitus and therefore, reduce the focus on it. Sound therapy is made up of four components.

Partial Masking: having sounds mixed with the tinnitus so it’s more difficult to hear it and as a result providing more control and relief from it.

  1. Relaxation: with positive visualisation and progressive relaxation a person can retrain their brain from having a negative reaction towards the tinnitus sound.  

  2. Attention Diversion and Brain Training: using the brain’s neuroplasticity, sound therapy allows the brain to focus on other sounds rather than the tinnitus and helps the tinnitus fade into the background.

  3. Adaptation: the tunes will provide tinnitus relief and help master tinnitus suppression.

Tinnitus Tunes is a membership-based website, where special sounds can be downloaded that help partially mask tinnitus and refocus attention away from it.

Interested in trying Tinnitus Tunes?

Get your discount here:

NFDHH have partnered with Tinnitus Tunes, which enables us to offer all our members a discount code. Please use: NFD27 to receive a 20% discount on the standard fees for Tinnitus Tunes.​

Click here to sign up to Tinnitus Tunes

There are 4 simple reasons to become a Tinnitus Tunes member.

1. It’s important to work with someone who can help and be trusted.

Auckland University’s Tinnitus team have helped over 80% of their members significantly change their tinnitus. Tinnitus Tunes have over 34 countries using their content and treatment.​

2. Prolonged periods of blissful silence can be achieved.

A good night’s sleep can be achieved through the 12 week Tinnitus Transformation Program by no longer being aware of the tinnitus sound. They are now able to enjoy the simple things in life, like listening to music or going out with loved ones.


3. Take control of your tinnitus

Members receive a comprehensive guide that includes links to all Tinnitus Tunes curated content including books, podcasts, Ted Talks, video training, relaxation exercises, masking & relaxation sounds, brain training exercises and a range of optional online courses or content depending on your type of tinnitus and your symptoms. The guide gives a structured step by step approach that you take at your own pace.

4. Access to the latest development in tinnitus treatment and research

As Tinnitus Tunes was created by tinnitus experts from Auckland University, they have the luxury to have content from 5 leading universities from around the world. Because of this Tinnitus Tunes have access to the leading and current tinnitus research and treatments which are regularly shared with their Tinnitus Tunes members.


If you are interested in signing up to Tinnitus Tunes, don’t forget to use our members discount: NFD27 to receive a 20% discount.

Acoustic Design

Managing noise levels in the workplace is a critical factor in caring for the well-being of all staff, but noise can especially impact those in the team with hearing loss.

Team members who are hard of hearing perceive sound in ways that can be highly distracting, especially for people wearing hearing aids. There are many smart design solutions that can help to manage noise. To improve your workplace acoustic conditions, we recommend getting advice from an acoustic consultant.

Association of Australasian Member Firms in New Zealand

To get on top of noise in the workplace, we recommend engaging a suitably qualified acoustic consultant, such as a Member of the Acoustical Society of New Zealand or a Member Firm of the Association of Australasian Acoustical Consultants.


For a list of the Association of Australasian Member firms in New Zealand, click the button below.


If you are Deaf or hard of hearing, there is funding available for Job Support Funding and Training as well as subsidies for specialised equipment to assist you in your job.
Below is more information about the Ministry of Health and Workbridge funding you can apply to.

Ministry of Health

The Ministry of Health may be able to help fund disability-related workplace equipment.


Click on the button below to view the services and subsidies the Ministry of Health provides for people living with hearing loss.

Workbridge: Employers

Workbridge works with public and private organisations in all sectors and of all sizes. They support workplaces to become confident in hiring people with a disability and forge partnership agreements with large employers.

They work with employers who need assistance to retain a staff member who develops a disability.

Book an awareness workshop today!

Enquire to join the Hearing Accredited Workplace Programme

Thanks for your submission!

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