NSW Public Health Bulletin archive

Part 3: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Mothers and Babies

Lee Taylor, Margaret Pym, Barbara Bajuk, Lee Sutton, Susan Travis, Clare Banks

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About the author/s

Lee Taylor

Margaret Pym

Barbara Bajuk

Lee Sutton

Susan Travis

Clare Banks

Abstract

Indigenous status is under-reported in health data collections in NSW, due to unwillingness of health staff to seek and record this information, and unwillingness of mothers to identify themselves as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander. The extent of underreporting of indigenous status in the NSW Midwives Data Collection is unknown. It appears, though, that reporting is increasing. Between 1994 and 1998, the reported number of babies born to Aboriginal/Torres Strait Islander mothers increased from 1,543 to 2,068 (Table 29), an increase from 1.8 to 2.4 per cent of all babies born in NSW. Twin pregnancies were reported for about one per cent of mothers.