HealthStats NSW
HealthStats NSW
HealthStats NSW

Type of birth (vaginal, caesarean, forceps etc) in first time mothers

1.1 Spontaneous vaginal birth, 2016
48.51.1 Spontaneous vaginal birth, 2015
49.81.1 Spontaneous vaginal birth, 2014
501.1 Spontaneous vaginal birth, 2013
50.61.1 Spontaneous vaginal birth, 2012
51.41.1 Spontaneous vaginal birth, 2011
50.61.1 Spontaneous vaginal birth, 2010
50.61.1 Spontaneous vaginal birth, 2009
51.41.1 Spontaneous vaginal birth, 2008
52.11.2 Induction of labour, 2016
41.31.2 Induction of labour, 2015
40.81.2 Induction of labour, 2014
39.51.2 Induction of labour, 2013
38.61.2 Induction of labour, 2012
35.61.2 Induction of labour, 2011
34.91.2 Induction of labour, 2010
34.21.2 Induction of labour, 2009
33.81.2 Induction of labour, 2008
331.3 Instrumental vaginal birth, 2016
23.31.3 Instrumental vaginal birth, 2015
22.81.3 Instrumental vaginal birth, 2014
22.71.3 Instrumental vaginal birth, 2013
22.91.3 Instrumental vaginal birth, 2012
22.61.3 Instrumental vaginal birth, 2011
23.11.3 Instrumental vaginal birth, 2010
23.61.3 Instrumental vaginal birth, 2009
22.81.3 Instrumental vaginal birth, 2008
22.71.4 Caesarean section, 2016
28.21.4 Caesarean section, 2015
27.41.4 Caesarean section, 2014
27.31.4 Caesarean section, 2013
26.51.4 Caesarean section, 2012
25.91.4 Caesarean section, 2011
26.11.4 Caesarean section, 2010
25.71.4 Caesarean section, 2009
25.71.4 Caesarean section, 2008
  • + Source

    NSW Perinatal Data Collection (SAPHaRI). Centre for Epidemiology and Evidence, NSW Ministry of Health.

  • + Notes


    1.1 Spontaneous vaginal birth: The number of selected primipara who have a spontaneous vaginal birth as a percentage of the total number of selected primipara who give birth. Spontaneous vaginal birth is defined as a vaginal birth (regardless of onset of labour) that is not assisted by forceps or vacuum and is not a vaginal breech delivery.

    1.2 Induction of labour: The number of selected primipara who undergo induction of labour as a percentage of the total number of selected primipara who give birth.

    1.3 Instrumental vaginal birth: The number of selected primipara who undergo an instrumental vaginal birth as a percentage of the total number of selected primipara who give birth.

    1.4 Caesarean section: The number of selected primipara undergoing caesarean section birth as a percentage of the total number of selected primipara who give birth.

    Selected primipara is a woman 20-34 years of age at the time of giving birth, giving birth for the first time at greater than 20 weeks gestation; singleton pregnancy; cephalic presentation; and at 37 to 41 completed weeks gestation.  

    Data include all mothers who gave birth (stillbirth or live birth) in a NSW facility (or a home) regardless of place of permanent residence.

    The number of ‘not stated’ cases varied by geographic area and year. This may reduce the reliability of the estimates in the instances where ‘not stated’ cases are a large proportion.


    Types add up to more than 100% because induction of labour can precede an instrumental vaginal birth and a birth by caesarian section.

    This is a national clinical indicator defined in: Australian Council on Healthcare Standards. Obstetrics Indicator Users' Manual 2017. Obstetrics version 8. Sydney: ACHS, 2017. It is operationalised as per AIHW (AIHW 2013) reporting using the definition by Women's Healthcare Australasia Core maternity Indicators Project (WHA 2007)

    Clinical indicators 1.1-1.4: Outcome of selected primipara.

    AIHW 2013 National core maternity indicators. Cat. no. PER 58. Canberra: AIHW.
    WHA (Women's Healthcare Australasia) 2007. Supporting excellence in maternity care: the core maternity indicators project: findings from the core maternity indicators project. Canberra: WHA.  

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  • + Methods
  • + Codes
    • Codes: NSW Perinatal Data Collection

      The current data collection form for the NSW Perinatal Data Collection (PDC) commenced in 2016. Codes are described in the NSW Perinatal Data Collection Manual - 2016 Edition, which is available on the internet at

  • + Related Indicators
  • + Associated Information
    • Key points: Pregnancy and the newborn period

      Recent trends

      In 2018 there were 95,552 births to 94,170 mothers in NSW, a decrease of 1.8% from 97,325 births in 2014.  The percentage of multiple (twin and triplet) pregnancies has remained fairly stable over recent years at about 1.4%. 

      Between 2014 and 2018:

      • The proportion of mothers who were teenagers continued to fall, from 2.7% to 1.9%.

      • The proportion of births to mothers over 35 years of age has remained stable.

      • The rate of low birth weight (less than 2,500 grams) has remained stable, ranging from 6.3% to 6.8%.

      • The perinatal mortality rate was 8.1 per 1,000 births in 2018, increased from 7.8 per 1,000 births in 2014.

      Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander mothers and babies

      Between 2014 and 2018:

      • The number of reported births to Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander mothers increased from 3,808 to 4,270, representing 3.9% and 4.5% respectively of all babies born in NSW.

      • The percentage of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander mothers who were teenagers fell substantially from 15.8% to 11.5%.

      • The percentage of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander mothers who commenced antenatal care before 14 weeks increased from 54.4% to 73.6%.

      • The perinatal mortality rate of 11.7 per 1,000 births in Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander mothers in 2018 is higher than the rate of 7.9 per 1,000 births experienced among babies born to non-Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander mothers.

    • Introduction: Pregnancy and the newborn period


      The health of Australian mothers and babies is generally good by world standards. Maternal deaths are rare, and perinatal mortality rates are low.

      The average woman in NSW can currently expect to give birth to 1.9 babies in her lifetime.

      NSW mothers are getting older with the mean maternal age at first birth around 29 years and at subsequent birth just over 30. The proportion of teenage mothers is declining.

      Burden of disease and social and economic disadvantage 

      Aboriginal mothers and babies, those from socioeconomically disadvantaged areas, and some overseas-born mothers and their babies continue to experience worse outcomes than other NSW mothers and babies.

    • Interventions: Pregnancy and the newborn period

      The NSW Ministry of Health maintains two population-based surveillance systems that collect information concerning pregnancy and birth: the NSW Perinatal Data Collection and the NSW Register of Congenital Conditions. They assist in monitoring the health of mothers and babies and, maternity service planning in NSW.

      The implementation of the NSW Aboriginal Maternal and Infant Health Strategy has improved access to culturally appropriate maternity services for Aboriginal mothers.

      The NSW Maternal and Perinatal Mortality Review Committee reviews each death of a mother or newborn baby to assess the cause and identify any possible avoidable factors. This information is used to improve services for mothers and babies.

    • For more information: Pregnancy and the newborn period

      Useful websites

      NSW Ministry of Health at, in particular see the annual New South Wales Mothers and Babies report, published by the Centre for Epidemiology and Evidence. The latest edition is available at

      Australian Bureau of Statistics at, in particular see Births (ABS Cat no 3301.0)

      Australian Institute of Health and Welfare at in general and in particular the AIHW's National Perinatal Statistics Unit and the annual publication: Australia’s mothers and babies.

      healthdirect at

      Population and Public Health Division. Improved reporting of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on population datasets in New South Wales using record linkage–a feasibility study. Sydney: NSW Ministry of Health, 2012. Available at:

      Australian Council on Healthcare Standards. Obstetrics Indicator User Manual. Sydney: ACHS. Available at:

Last Updated At: Wednesday, 12 June 2019