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Diabetes Res Clin Pract. 2008 Jul;81(1):105-9. doi: 10.1016/j.diabres.2008.03.001. Epub 2008 Apr 16.

The accuracy of population health data for monitoring trends and outcomes among women with diabetes in pregnancy.

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  • 1Clinical and Population Perinatal Health Research, The Kolling Institute of Medical Research, University of Sydney 2006, Australia.



To assess the accuracy of routinely collected population birth and hospital datasets in identifying maternal pregestational diabetes mellitus (PDM) and gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM).


Information on maternal diabetes status was obtained from the medical records of a random sample of 1200 women and compared with routinely collected, population-based birth and hospital data. PDM and GDM are reported in both databases. Sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV), negative predictive value and the kappa statistic were determined.


Medical records were available for 1184 of the 1200 women sampled. 0.3% of women were classified with PDM and 4.8% with GDM. 'True' PDM was under-reported and misclassified in the birth data, but all cases were reported in the hospital data. GDM was also more completely and more accurately reported in the hospital data than in the birth data. Diabetes requiring insulin was more likely to be reported than non-insulin dependent diabetes.


Hospital data were more sensitive and accurate (higher PPVs) than birth data and these measures were not improved by ascertaining diabetes from either of the two datasets. More severe forms of diabetes were more likely to be reported than less severe.

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