Apgar scores are clinical indicators of a baby’s condition shortly after birth. The score is based on 5 characteristics of the baby: skin colour, pulse, breathing, muscle tone and reflex irritability. Each characteristic is given between 0 and 2 points, with a total score between 0 and 10 points.
An Apgar score of 7 or more at 5 minutes after birth indicates that the baby is adapting well to the environment, while a score of less than 7 indicates complications for the baby. Data on Apgar scores is limited to liveborn babies.
In Australia, almost all liveborn babies had an Apgar score of 7 or more (98%) and this has been consistent over time.
The data visualisation below presents data on the Apgar score at 5 minutes of liveborn babies, by selected maternal and baby characteristics, for 2020. Click the trend button to see how data has changed over an 11-year period (where available).