Health Regions: Boundaries and Correspondence with Census Geography
Health region boundary files

The health region boundaries provided in this product are based on 2016 Census geographic units. The smallest geographic unit available has been used as the building block to define health regions. In general, the legislated boundaries respect these units, but they do not always respect 2016 dissemination areas (DA) or 2016 dissemination blocks (DB) once the legislated boundaries are digitized. In all provinces except British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Ontario (LHINs), the dissemination area was used to define health regions. However, in several instances, the actual legislated boundaries split DAs. In the Prairie provinces and B.C. the dissemination block (DB) was used to improve the accuracy of these boundaries. Even with this, the health region boundaries do not always reflect the legislated boundaries recognized by the provinces thus creating many instances of split dissemination blocks.

The limits that did not respect STC geometry (the splits) were digitized by utilizing maps, spatial layers and/or descriptions supplied by and with the cooperation of the authority for each province.

Method used to create health region 2018 boundary files

All processes and procedures to update the boundary files were carried out using ESRI Inc.® ArcGIS TM 10.5.1, Safe Software Inc. FME ® Desktop 2015, Pitney Bowes Software Inc.® MapInfo 12.0.0, Microsoft ® Access 2007, and Microsoft ® Excel 2007.

Boundary file formats

All health region boundaries in this publication are available in two formats: An ESRI ® shapefile format and MapInfo® table format.

The ESRI ® shapefile is supplied in a zip file. This file expands to provide six files of different extensions which are: (CPG, DBF, PRJ, SHP, SHX, and XML).

The MapInfo® format, ©Pitney Bowes Software Inc., is supplied in a zip file. This file expands to provide four files of different extensions which are: (TAB, DAT, ID, and MAP).

Boundary files are provided as a national boundary file and are provided as individual provincial boundary files.

Projection information

The disseminated projection coordinate system of the health region boundary files is as follows:

Digital boundary files


MapInfo Comprehensive Digital boundary files


ArcGIS Comprehensive Digital boundary files

Cartographic boundary files


MapInfo Comprehensive Cartographic boundary files


ArcGIS Comprehensive Cartographic boundary files

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