L’ 89.0% of deliveries in 2022 it happened in Public healthcare institutions, 62.2% of births in facilities where at least 1,000 births take place per year. 20.0% of mothers are foreign. The average age at first child is for Italian women over 32 years.
This is what emerges from the Report on the birth event in Italy, produced by the Ministry’s Statistics Office. The Report presents the analyzes of the data collected from the information flow of the Birth Assistance Certificate (CeDAP) for the year 2022.
The survey – established by the Decree of the Minister of Health 16 July 2001, n. 349 – constitutes at a national level the richest source of health, epidemiological and socio-demographic information relating to the birth event and represents an essential tool for national and regional health planning, with an almost total level of coverage.
I trend 2012 – 2022
In the Report on the birth event in Italy in 2022, some innovative elements have been introduced, relating to the trend trends, from the year 2012 to the year 2022 (both in the form of graphic representations and tables), of the main variables observed: the place of childbirth, the characteristics of mothers, pregnancy, childbirth, the newborn and medically assisted procreation techniques.
The percentage of preterm births (<37 settimane) passa da circa 7 parti pre-termine ogni 100 parti a 6; aumenta l’average age of mothers with their first child (both for Italians and foreigners); the average age of first child for Italian women goes from 31.5 in 2012 to 32.2 from 2022. For foreign women the average age at first child goes from 27.7 to 29.2 years.
The number of check-ups carried out during pregnancy increases significantly, as do ultrasounds (albeit less markedly); in 91.9% of pregnancies the number of obstetric visits carried out is more than 4 while in 76.7% of pregnancies more than 3 are carried out ultrasound. For theamniocentesis however, the percentage of mothers over 40 who use this diagnostic technique went from 33% in 2012 to 6% in 2022 (and drastically reduced for all age groups analysed).
Also the percentage of cesarean sections is reduced, going from 36% in 2012 to 31% circa of 2022, a diversified effect depending on the type of hospital facility where they take place, consequently there is an increase in the percentage of vaginal births.
The percentage of women who resort to in vitro fertilization with subsequent transfer of embryos into the uterus (IVF) it goes from 37% in 2012 to 48% in 2022 and continues to be the most used technique; however, the percentage of those who resort to the in vitro fertilization method via cytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) increases only slightly.
Overall the parts with medically assisted procreation PMA increased by 73% in the period considered, but the percentage of multiple births in pregnancies with PMA significantly decreased (21% in 2012, 9% in 2022).
The phenomenon of denatality (535,428 total births in 2012, 393,997 in 2022), but the percentage of stillbirths decreases (albeit slightly).
Where women give birth in Italy
L’ 89.0% of deliveries it happened in Public healthcare institutions and equivalent, 10.8% in nursing homes and only 0.15% elsewhere (other care facility, home, etc.). In the Regions where the presence of accredited private structures is significant compared to public ones, the percentages are substantially different. 62.2% of births take place in facilities where at least 1,000 births take place per year.
The characteristics of mothers: citizenship, level of education and profession
In 2022, approximately 20,0% of births is relative to mothers of non-Italian citizenship. This phenomenon is more widespread in the areas of the country with a greater foreign presence, i.e. in the Centre-North, where more than 26% of births take place by foreign mothers. The most represented geographical areas of origin are Africa (28.7%) and the European Union (19.6%). Mothers of Asian and South American origin make up 19.3% and 7.9% of foreign mothers respectively.
Of women who gave birth in the year 2022 the 42.5% have a medium-high education, 22.7% low-medium and 34.8% have obtained a degree. Among foreigners, however, a medium-low level of education prevails (41.3%).
The analysis of the professional condition highlights that the 58.6% of mothers are employed24.7% are housewives and 14.5% are unemployed or looking for their first job.
0.9% of births have a weight less than 1,500 grams and 6.2% between 1,500 and 2,500 grams. In the vitality assessment tests of the newborn through the Apgar index, 98.5% of newborns reported a score between 7 and 10 5 minutes after birth.
994 stillbirths were detected, corresponding to a stillbirth rate of 2.40 stillbirths per 1,000 births, and 4,332 cases of malformations diagnosed at birth were recorded.