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In New Zealand, reporting of adverse events is guided by the National Adverse Events Reporting Policy 2017. The Policy sets out local organisational roles and the Commission’s national role in reporting, reviewing and learning from adverse events. The Policy is intended to assist health and disability service providers to develop and operate their own adverse event reporting, review and learning systems.

The purpose of the Policy is to improve the quality, safety and experience of health and disability services through systems that:

  • are safe
  • are consumer and whānau-centred
  • provide for early identification and review of adverse events
  • ensure lessons are learnt so that the risk of repeating preventable adverse events is minimised
  • demonstrate public accountability and transparency.

The Policy was initially developed in 2012 and has recently been reviewed following consultation with key stakeholders in DHBs and the wider health and disability sector and with the guidance of the Adverse Events Learning Programme Expert Advisory Group.

If you have any queries about the National Adverse Events Reporting Policy, please email the Adverse Events Learning Programme team at the Commission on

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Last updated: 16th December, 2021