Australian Government: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare METeOR Home Page

National Indigenous Reform Agreement: PI 12-Proportion of babies born of low birth weight, 2012 QS

Identifying and definitional attributes

Metadata item type:Help on this termQuality Statement
METeOR identifier:Help on this term480399
Registration status:Help on this termIndigenous, Archived 13/06/2013

Relational attributes

Indicators linked to this Quality statement:Help on this term

National Indigenous Reform Agreement: PI 12-Proportion of babies born of low birth weight, 2012 Indigenous, Archived 13/06/2013

Data quality

Institutional environment:Help on this term

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) has calculated this indicator.

The AIHW is an independent statutory authority within the Health and Ageing portfolio, which is accountable to the Parliament of Australia through the Minister for Health and Ageing. For further information see the AIHW website.
Timeliness:Help on this term

The reference period for the data is 2007 to 2009.

Single year data (2009) has been provided for time series. Data are collected on an ongoing basis and are compiled by the AIHW annually.
Accessibility:Help on this term

The AIHW provides a variety of products that draw upon the NPDC. Published products available on the AIHW website are:

  • Australia’s mothers and babies annual report
  • Indigenous mothers and their babies, Australia 2001-2004
  • METeOR – online metadata repository
  • National health data dictionary.

Ad hoc data are also available on request (charges apply to recover costs). Data for this indicator are published annually in Australia’s mothers and babies; and biennially in reports such as the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Performance Framework report, the Health and Welfare of Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples, and the Overcoming Indigenous Disadvantage report.

Interpretability:Help on this term

Supporting information on the quality and use of the NPDC are published annually in Australia’s mothers and babies (Chapter 1), available in hard copy or on the AIHW website.

Comprehensive information on the quality of Perinatal NMDS elements are published in Perinatal National Minimum Data Set compliance evaluation 2001 to 2005. Readers are advised to read caveat information to ensure appropriate interpretation of the performance indicator. More detailed information on the quality of Indigenous data that might affect interpretation of the indicator was published in Indigenous mothers and their babies, Australia 2001-2004 (Chapter 1 & Chapter 5).

Metadata information for this indicator are published in the AIHW’s online metadata repository — METeOR. Metadata information for the Perinatal NMDS are also published in METeOR and the National health data dictionary.

Relevance:Help on this term

The National Perinatal Data Collection comprises data items as specified in the Perinatal National Minimum Data Set plus additional items collected by the states and territories. The purpose of the Perinatal NMDS is to collect information at birth for monitoring pregnancy, childbirth and the neonatal period for both the mother and baby(s).

The Perinatal NMDS is a specification for data collected on all births in Australia in hospitals, birth centres and the community. It includes information for all live births and stillbirths of at least 400 grams birthweight or at least 20 weeks gestation. It includes data items relating to the mother, including demographic characteristics and factors relating to the pregnancy, labour and birth; and data items relating to the baby, including birth status, sex, gestational age at birth, birthweight and neonatal morbidity and fetal deaths.

While the Perinatal NMDS includes all relevant data elements of interest for this indicator, it includes information on the Indigenous status of the mother only. The Perinatal NMDS currently has no data item for the Indigenous status of the baby, and thus reporting of Indigenous status of the baby is based on maternal Indigenous status. In 2009, this represented approximately 73 per cent of all Indigenous births based on data from ABS birth registrations (ABS 2010: Births, Australia 2009). Consultation for a new data element to collect Indigenous status of the baby was completed in June 2010 and the data element will be added to the Perinatal NMDS from July 2012.

While each jurisdiction has a unique perinatal form for collecting data on which the format of the Indigenous status question and recording categories varies slightly, all systems include the NMDS item on Indigenous status of mother.

No formal national assessment has been undertaken to determine completeness of the coverage of Indigenous mothers in the Perinatal NMDS. However, the proportion of Indigenous mothers for the period 2000–2009 has been consistent, at 3.4–3.8 per cent of women who gave birth. Comparisons between states and territories should be interpreted with caution.

Babies of mothers for whom Indigenous status was not stated have been excluded from rates but are included in totals for this indicator.

Data excludes multiple births, stillbirths, and births with unknown birthweight.

Analysis by State/Territory is based on the usual residence of the mother. Excludes Australian non-residents of external territories and where State/Territory of residence was not stated.

Accuracy:Help on this term

Inaccurate responses may occur in all data provided to the Institute. The Institute does not have direct access to perinatal records to determine the accuracy of the data provided. However, the Institute undertakes validation on receipt of data. Data received from states and territories are checked for completeness, validity and logical errors. Potential errors are queried with jurisdictions, and corrections and resubmissions are made in response to these edit queries. The AIHW does not adjust data to account for possible data errors.

Errors may occur during the processing of data by the states and territories or at the AIHW. Processing errors prior to data supply may be found through the validation checks applied by the Institute. The data supplied for the 2009 Perinatal NMDS by Victoria to prepare this indicator was not the final data. Further minor changes to the data are unlikely to produce any detectable change to the indicator. This indicator is calculated on data that has been reported to the AIHW. Prior to publication, these data are referred back to jurisdictions for review. The Institute does not adjust the data to correct for missing values. Note that because of data editing and subsequent updates of State/Territory databases, and because data are being reported by place of residence rather than place of birth the numbers reported for this indicator differ from those in reports published by the states and territories. The data are not rounded.

Data presented by Indigenous status are influenced by the quality and completeness of Indigenous identification of mothers which is likely to differ among jurisdictions. Approximately 0.4 per cent of mothers who gave birth in the reference period had missing Indigenous status information. No adjustments have been made for under-identification or missing Indigenous status information and thus jurisdictional comparisons should not be made.

Three years of data have been combined to minimise random statistical variation and to minimise the risk of data governance issues such as identification.

Coherence:Help on this termChanging levels of Indigenous identification over time and across jurisdictions affect the accuracy of compiling a consistent time series.

Relational attributes

Related metadata references:Help on this term

Has been superseded by National Indigenous Reform Agreement: PI 07-Proportion of babies born of low birth weight, 2013 QS Indigenous, Archived 25/06/2014

My items Help on this term
Download Help on this term