HealthStats NSW
HealthStats NSW
HealthStats NSW

Antenatal care by gestational age

Before 20 weeks, All LHDs
92Before 20 weeks, Far West
92.3Before 20 weeks, Western NSW
90Before 20 weeks, Murrumbidgee
88.5Before 20 weeks, Southern NSW
80Before 20 weeks, Mid North Coast
92.7Before 20 weeks, Northern NSW
94.2Before 20 weeks, Hunter New England
94.3Before 20 weeks, Central Coast
95.6Before 20 weeks, Northern Sydney
96.4Before 20 weeks, Nepean Blue Mountains
94.3Before 20 weeks, Western Sydney
88.4Before 20 weeks, Illawarra Shoalhaven
91.3Before 20 weeks, South Eastern Sydney
94.4Before 20 weeks, South Western Sydney
88.8Before 20 weeks, Sydney
95.1Before 14 weeks, All LHDs
77.6Before 14 weeks, Far West
58.2Before 14 weeks, Western NSW
77.5Before 14 weeks, Murrumbidgee
78Before 14 weeks, Southern NSW
61.9Before 14 weeks, Mid North Coast
86.2Before 14 weeks, Northern NSW
86.6Before 14 weeks, Hunter New England
87.6Before 14 weeks, Central Coast
83.2Before 14 weeks, Northern Sydney
84.9Before 14 weeks, Nepean Blue Mountains
79.8Before 14 weeks, Western Sydney
72.1Before 14 weeks, Illawarra Shoalhaven
69.8Before 14 weeks, South Eastern Sydney
73.5Before 14 weeks, South Western Sydney
71.6Before 14 weeks, Sydney
  • + Source

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

  • + Notes

    Antenatal care (or prenatal care) should commence as early as possible in pregnancy to ensure the best outcomes for the mother and the baby. Up to 2010, the question asked at data collection was ‘Duration of pregnancy at first antenatal visit’. From 2011, the question asked is: ‘Duration of pregnancy at first comprehensive booking or assessment by clinician’. Because this new question more specifically defines the type of visit that is reported as antenatal care, the proportion of mothers who commenced antenatal care in 2011 is lower than in previous years.

    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.

    Data for some Local Health Districts (LHDs) may not be included individually due to low numbers. All LHDs includes these LHDs where numbers are low, and records where the LHD was missing or not stated. Albury Local Government Area (LGA) is included in All LHDs.

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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: Tuesday, 29 October 2019