The Databank has been used for a number of research related projects - ranging from epidemiological studies within Aberdeen to collaborative work with other units world-wide, where anonymous extracts of the data are provided, usually in SPSS format.
The Databank has a number of unique and special features which make it a particularly valuable resource for research purposes:
- Total Population
All reproductive events to women resident in a defined geographical area with a relatively stable population are included.A recent tracing exercise using the Community Health Index (CHI) register in Scotland revealed that only 3.8% of those who gave birth in Aberdeen Maternity Hospital and consequently had a record in the AMND had migrated out of this geographical region.
- All Fertility Related Events
All obstetric and fertility related gynaecological events, e.g., sterilisation, early pregnancies etc. are included in the Databank. This feature greatly enhances the quality of epidemiological and demographic data.
- Original Records (Hard copy)
The original Maternity case records are available for the whole period. Additional data items can thus be added to the Databank for selected cases and validity of data can be checked systematically.
Data collection has been continuous since 1950 and is ongoing, allowing study of secular change, and identification of considerable numbers of intergenerational, sibling and twin pairs for the study of genetic and environmental influences upon reproductive performance.
- High Quality and Consistent Data
Stringent and consistent criteria have been used for the coding of gestation length, birthweight, pregnancy complications and cause of perinatal death by trained coding staff. When metrication was introduced for recording of height, birthweight etc., the earlier records were all converted.
- Multiple Pregnancies
Zygosity has been determined for the majority of twin pairs from 1968 onwards. This is also available for surviving twins born between 1960 and 1964.
- Record Linkage
Computerisation allows relatively easy identification of complete reproductive histories not only of individual women but also of families. Using this information intergenerational analysis can be performed.
- Extensive Social Data
An unusual amount of social data is available for most years including occupational for women, husbands or partners, grandfathers, duration of education and lifestyle factors such as smoking.
For more information on what is held in the AMND, visit our content page.