First antenatal visit (PI13)

This indicator is the proportion of female Indigenous regular clients who gave birth within the previous 12 months who had their first antenatal care visit within the following periods:

  • before 11 weeks
  • 11–13 weeks
  • 14–19 weeks
  • 20 or more weeks
  • not recorded or no visit.

It is collected for age groups:

  • less than 20
  • 20–34
  • 35 and over.

There have been changes to the specification of this indicator over time. See Technical notes for more information.

Why antenatal care is important

Antenatal care is a planned visit between a pregnant woman and a midwife or doctor to assess and improve the wellbeing of the mother and baby throughout pregnancy. It does not include visits where the sole purpose is to confirm the pregnancy.

Antenatal care provides an opportunity to find, treat, and provide advice on chronic or pre-existing conditions that might cause pregnancy-related complications, such as hypertension, diabetes, mental health problems, sexually transmitted infections, tobacco and alcohol misuse, inadequate nutrition, and unhealthy weight.

Regular antenatal care, and especially that starting in the first trimester, is associated with less pregnancy-related complications and with positive maternal and child health outcomes.

The proportion of Indigenous mothers attending an antenatal visit in the first trimester has increased over time. Indigenous mothers, however, are less likely than non-Indigenous mothers to have their first antenatal care visit in the first trimester (AIHW 2021).

At June 2021, 46% of female Indigenous regular clients who gave birth in the previous 12 months had their first antenatal visit in the first trimester (before 14 weeks gestational age).

Having the first antenatal visit in the first trimester was highest in:

  • New South Wales/the Australian Capital Territory (combined) (54%)
  • Inner regional areas (60%)
  • organisations other than Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisations (non-ACCHOs) (48%).

This indicator, however, is affected by the completeness of the recording of antenatal visits in each jurisdiction (see Technical notes for more information).

Timing of first antenatal visit, by either state/territory, remoteness or organisation type, June 2021

Two Tableau visualisations are presented here. The first shows the percentage of female Indigenous regular clients who gave birth in the last year by the timing of their first antenatal visit (select for before 11 weeks, 11–13 weeks, 14–19 weeks, 20 or more weeks, not recorded or no visit) for either:

  • state/territory (NSW/ACT, Vic, Qld, WA, SA, Tas, NT, Total)
  • remoteness area (Major cities, Inner regional, Outer regional, Remote, Very remote, Total)
  • organisation type (ACCHO, non-ACCHO, Total).

The second visualisation shows the selected information from the first visualisation by age group (<20, 20–34, 35 and over).

Data supporting this visualisation are available in Excel supplementary data tables at Archived content.

Reference

AIHW (Australian Institute of Health and Welfare) (2021) Australia’s mothers and babies—data visualisations, Cat. no. PER 101, Canberra: AIHW.