Smoking during pregnancy (PI11)

This indicator is the proportion of female Indigenous regular clients who gave birth within the previous 12 months and whose smoking status recorded during pregnancy was:

  • current smoker
  • ex-smoker
  • never smoked.

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 not smoking during pregnancy is important

Tobacco smoking is the smoking of tobacco products, including packet cigarettes, roll-your-own cigarettes, cigars or pipes.

Tobacco smoking during pregnancy is the most common preventable risk factor for pregnancy complications, and is associated with poorer perinatal outcomes, including low birthweight, being small for gestational age, pre-term birth and perinatal death. Women who stop smoking during pregnancy can reduce the risk of adverse outcomes for themselves and their babies.

The proportion of Indigenous mothers who smoke during pregnancy has decreased over time. Indigenous mothers, however, are more likely to smoke during pregnancy than non-Indigenous mothers (AIHW 2021).

At June 2021, 46% of Indigenous regular clients who gave birth in the previous 12 months smoked at some point during pregnancy.

Smoking during pregnancy was lowest in:

  • Victoria/Tasmania (combined) (36%)
  • Major cities (35%)
  • organisations other than Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisations (non-ACCHOs) (40%).

Smoking during pregnancy, by either state/territory, remoteness or organisation type, reporting period

Two Tableau visualisations are presented here. The first shows the percentage of Indigenous regular clients who gave birth in the last year by their smoking status in the last year (select for current smoker, ex-smoker, or never smoked) for either:

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

Reporting periods of either June 2017, December 2017, June 2018, December 2018, June 2019, December 2019, June 2020, December 2020, or June 2021 can be selected.

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

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


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