Skip to Main Content

Health Indicators & Health-based Statistics

This guide will give you an introduction to finding health indicators and health statistics using Canada's two primary sources: Statistics Canada and the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI).

Health Regions and Peer Groups

Health Regions: Boundaries and Correspondence with Census Geography
Health regions and peer groups

Health region

"Health region" refers to administrative areas defined by the provincial ministries of health. Ex. Winnipeg Regional Health Authority. 

For complete Canadian coverage, each of the northern territories also represents a health region.

Health region codes

A four-digit numeric code is used to uniquely identify health regions. The first two digits represent the province, and the second two digits represent the health region. 

Reference Maps

This series of reference maps show the boundaries, names, and codes of health regions and peer groups in Canada, by province. Note the most recent information for these maps is 2018. Earlier reference maps are available for historical comparison.

Image source: Map of Manitoba's Regional Health Authorities


Health region peer groups

Health regions 2018 by peer group

In order to effectively compare health regions with similar socio-economic characteristics, health regions have been grouped into 'peer groups'.

Twenty–four variables were chosen to cover as many of the social and economic determinants of health as possible, using data collected at the health region level mostly from the Census of Canada. Concepts covered include:

  • basic demographics (for example, population change and demographic structure),
  • living conditions (for example, socio-economic characteristics, housing, and income inequality), and
  • working conditions (for example, labour market conditions).


Census Geography

Census geography covers a wide range of geographic areas—from provinces and territories down to blocks. These geographic areas have boundaries, names, and other information that make it possible to locate them on the ground and relate census data to them. Find statistics using a map as a gateway. Click the link below and follow the instructions.

Find information by region or area


1. Select a geographic region by clicking on the map. Use the scroll on the mouse or the +/- buttons to zoom in on regions.

2. Check Subject: Health. The list will expand and you can further refine the topic by selecting one of the key indicators, ex. Diseases and physical health conditions.

3. Check Content: Latest (this will exclude any older, archived content)

4. Check document type: tables (optional but recommended)

5. Select the desired table, ex. Arthritis, by age group

6. Tables can be further refined (depending on the variables)

More about using and customizing Statistics Canada data tables.