Reports and publications (published elsewhere)

Birthweight of babies born to Indigenous mothers

Posted on: 25 August, 2014
Issue: Vol 14 No 3, July 2014 – September 2014
Related to Births Growth Infants and young children Pregnancy Social issues

Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (2014)
Birthweight of babies born to Indigenous mothers
Canberra: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare

This paper provides an overview of the birthweight of babies born to Indigenous mothers, including recent trends and factors associated with birthweight variation. The paper focuses on low birthweight because of its increased risk of infant morbidity and mortality, and its relatively high occurrence among the Indigenous
population. Some information about high birthweight is also provided.

Section two presents an overview of the number of births in Australia, with a focus on births to Indigenous mothers.

Section three presents information on the birthweight of babies born to Indigenous mothers and, for comparison purposes, with non-Indigenous mothers, including:

  • distribution of birthweight in 2011 for all live births and for singleton (as opposed to twin or other multiple) live births
  • trends in low, high and average birthweight over the period 2000 to 2011.

Section four presents information on selected risk factors for low birthweight including:

  • pre-term births
  • maternal smoking
  • antenatal care
  • other factors (for example, age of the mother and socioeconomic status).

Abstract adapted from Australian Institute of Health and Welfare

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