Cohort profile: The Canadian Census Health and Environment Cohorts (CanCHECs)

Michael Tjepkema, Tanya Christidis, Tracey Bushnik and Lauren Pinaul
Description / Summary


The Canadian Census Health and Environment Cohorts (CanCHECs) are population-based linked datasets of the household population at the time of census collection. The CanCHECs combine data from respondents to the long-form census or the National Household Survey between 1991 and 2011 with administrative health data (e.g., mortality, cancer incidence, hospitalizations, emergency ambulatory care) and annual mailing address postal codes. The CanCHEC datasets are rich national data resources that can be used to measure and examine health inequalities across socioeconomic and ethnocultural dimensions for different periods and locations. These datasets can also be used to examine the effects of exposure to environmental factors on human health. Because of their large size, the CanCHECs are an excellent resource for examining rare health outcomes and small population groups. They are ideally suited for environmental health research because of their geographic coverage across all regions of Canada, their long follow-up periods and their linkage to annual postal code history.