This paper prospectively documents the health-related quality of life (HRQoL) and social participation benefits of adult patients receiving cochlear implants in Australia and New Zealand. Thirty-four consecutively implanted patients completed the Assessment of Quality of Life (AQoL) and Hearing Participation Scale (HPS) instruments before implantation, and at 3- and 6-month follow-ups. Implantation resulted in significant improvements in AQoL and HPS scores. The effect size was 1.09 for both measures. Those in the top socio-economic tertile obtained the greatest gains. The HRQoL and social participation benefits were slightly larger than those reported elsewhere. This may be because participants used more recent technology (Nucleus 24 rather than Nucleus 22) and received auditory and self-efficacy training as part of their rehabilitation. The results suggest that cochlear implants have a large beneficial effect. They show that social and HRQoL outcomes can be parsimoiously measured using the HPS and AQoL instruments.