Health of Canadians

Understanding the health of the population and the broader factors or determinants that affect the health of Canadians is critical to informing health-promoting policies, evaluating health care performance and ensuring all Canadians have a good quality of life.

Statistics Canada is a leader in collecting data on Canada’s health, economy, society and environment and, as such, is uniquely positioned to integrate data to better understand the impacts of a broad range of determinants on health outcomes. Population health (defined as the health outcomes of a group of individuals, including the distribution of such outcomes within the group)Note 1 is assessed by:

  • measuring and monitoring determinants of health (e.g., education, employment and income), health behaviours (e.g., smoking and physical activity) and health outcomes (e.g., chronic conditions), including how they are distributed and interrelated;
  • assessing health inequalities (defined as the differences in the health status of individuals and groups).Note 2

This report provides an overview of the state of population health in Canada using the most recent data for health indicators in several domains, as outlined in the Health Statistics Branch’s Population Health Data Framework (below). The determinants of health are used to describe how health outcomes and behaviours are distributed within the Canadian population. This information is also used to highlight inequalities that may exist. Throughout the report, differences across time, geography and the social determinants of health (such as age, sex and income) are emphasized when possible.

Figure 1. Health Statistics Branch Population Health Data Framework

Figure 1. Health Statistics  Branch Population Health Data Framework

Description for Figure 1

The following framework is used by the Health Statistics Branch. There are four interconnected health indicator domains showing overlap between health determinants (e.g., age, income), health behaviours (e.g., exercise, nutrition), access to health care (e.g., unmet health care needs) and health outcomes (e.g., chronic conditions). The term “health equity” is included in this framework to signify disaggregation with these health indicator domains across the social determinants of health, to highlight if particular groups experience health disparities.

Sources: Statistics Canada, Health Statistics Branch. (2023, February). Strategic Plan 2023-2025 - Figure 2: Population Health Data Framework.

Date modified: