National Perinatal Data Collection

The NPDC is a national collection of data on pregnancy and childbirth. The data are based on births reported to the perinatal data collection in each state and territory in Australia. Midwives and other birth attendants, using information obtained from women and from hospital or other records, complete notification forms for each birth. A standard de-identified extract is provided to the AIHW on an annual basis to form the NPDC.

The NPDC has birthweight and gestational age conditions for records included as live births and stillbirths. This means a very small number of live births occurring before 20 weeks’ gestation and weighing less than 400 grams are not included in the NPDC. Data for babies whose gestational age and birthweight were not recorded are also not included. Live births and stillbirths may include terminations of pregnancy after 20 weeks’ gestation. There are variations in legislation regarding termination of pregnancy between states and territories, and the recording of terminations is likely to be incomplete.

More information about the NPDC can be found in the data quality statement.

State and territory data collections

Data for the NCADC are sourced from state and territory congenital anomaly registers and perinatal and admitted patient data collections. There are differences in the collection method and scope of these collections, for example the anomalies that are in scope for collection, the availability of and inclusion of terminations of pregnancy data, and the age at which cases can be notified for inclusion.

Collection and reporting may also be affected by the availability and use of prenatal screening programs and diagnostic testing services, and whether the results of these are notified to congenital anomaly collections. Key information about these collections is summarised in Table 2, with more detail available in the information sheet (PDF 120kB).