National Perinatal Data Collection
The National Perinatal Data Collection (NPDC) is a national population-based cross sectional data collection of 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 staff, using information obtained from mothers and from hospital or other records, complete notification forms for each birth. Selected information is compiled annually into this national dataset by the National Perinatal Epidemiology and Statistics Unit. Information is included in the NPDC on both live births and stillbirths of at least 400 grams birthweight or at least 20 weeks gestation.
The Perinatal National Minimum Data Set (NMDS) is a specification for perinatal data elements for mandatory collection and reporting at a national level, and depends on a national agreement to collect the data in a uniform way. This core set of data elements is agreed to by the Statistical Information Management Committee (SIMC) and endorsed by the National Health Information Management Principal Committee (NHIMPC). The Perinatal NMDS was first specified in 1997. 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 and birthweight. More data elements are included in the NPDC than are specified in the NMDS. Definitions of all data elements in the Perinatal NMDS are included in the AIHW’s online metadata registry, ‘METeOR’.