Canadian Health Measures Survey (CHMS)

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The survey collects information on Canadians' health and health habits. The first part of the survey is a household interview, which includes questions on many health-related topics. The second part of the survey involves a visit to a mobile examination center to collect direct physical measures such as blood pressure, height and weight, bone density and vision tests.

One of the main goals of the survey is to gather information to help improve health programs and services in Canada.

Your information may also be used by Statistics Canada for other statistical and research purposes.

Collection period:
From January 3, 2018 to December 19, 2019
Collection methods:
Personal interview in the respondent's home, followed by a visit to a mobile examination center, where physical measures are taken.
Survey participation:
Voluntary
  • Block Information Confidentiality

    Confidentiality

    Data are collected under the authority of the Statistics Act, Revised Statutes of Canada, 1985, Chapter S-19. Your information will be kept strictly confidential.

  • Block Information on Data sharing agreements and record linkage

    Data sharing agreements and record linkage

    Data sharing agreements

    To avoid duplication of surveys, Statistics Canada has signed agreements with Health Canada and the Public Health Agency of Canada to share the information collected during this survey. They have agreed to keep the information confidential and use it only for statistical purposes.

    The information you provide to us can only be shared with your consent. Your name, address, telephone number and health number will not be shared.

    Record linkage

    At the end of the household interview:

    To enrich the data from this survey, while minimizing the response burden, Statistics Canada will combine your survey responses with information from the tax data of all members of your household. Statistics Canada may also add information from other surveys or administrative data sources.

    At the end of the mobile examination center visit:

    Statistics Canada may combine information about you collected during this survey with information from other surveys or from administrative data sources. The results will be used for statistical purposes only.

  • Block Information on Topics covered in the survey

    Topics covered in the survey

    The survey asks questions about

    • body composition
    • blood pressure
    • bone density
    • vision
    • environmental contaminants in blood, urine and hair.

    For a copy of the fall Canadian Health Measures Survey content summary for cycles 1-8, please contact Statistics Canada's Statistical Information Service (toll-free 1-800-263-1136); 1-514-283-8300; statcan.infostats-infostats.statcan@canada.ca.

  • Block Information on Cycle 6 – Information and consent booklet

    Cycle 6 – Information and consent booklet

    The Canadian Health Measures Survey at a Glance

    One or two members of your household have been selected to participate in the Canadian Health Measures Survey (CHMS). We invite you to familiarize yourself with the survey details contained in this booklet. Unless otherwise indicated, the information presented pertains to all participants. However, you will find additional information regarding the participation of children and youth aged 3 to 17. Statistics Canada employees are also available to answer any additional questions you may have.

    Summary

    The CHMS is a survey conducted by Statistics Canada in partnership with Health Canada and the Public Health Agency of Canada. It aims to obtain detailed information on the health of Canadians aged 3 to 79.

    Your participation is important

    This innovative survey provides key information on the health of Canadians that could not be obtained otherwise.

    Although voluntary, your participation in the CHMS is essential to obtain the most accurate and reliable results possible. As you have been randomly selected to represent other members of your community, no one can replace you.

    Some highlights

    The CHMS was introduced in 2007. Since then, the data collected has allowed us to release information that pertains to a wide range of public-health concerns, such as the following:

    • Among Canadian adults aged 20 to 79, 22% suffer from hypertension. However, 16% of people with hypertension are unaware of their condition.
    • One in five Canadian adults aged 18 to 79 has metabolic syndrome, a cluster of risk factors that increases the risk of cardiovascular disease and type-2 diabetes.
    • Blood lead levels have declined substantially since 1978. Today, less than 1% of Canadians have blood lead levels above the Canadian blood lead intervention level of 10 µg/dL. This proportion was 27% just 30 years ago.
    • Only 13% of boys and 6% of girls aged 5 to 17 meet the recommendations for sixty minutes of physical activity per day.

    Information at your service

    The data we collect from you and other participants enable us to provide a comprehensive source of health information for professionals and stakeholders in the health system. This information is used to better understand current and future health-care needs.

    Confidentiality is our priority

    The CHMS is conducted under the authority of the Statistics Act, which guarantees the confidentiality of all information you provide. We do not release any information that could identify you or any member of your household, unless you give your informed consent.

    How is the survey conducted?

    A two-step survey

    First step: An in-home interview

    A Statistics Canada interviewer will visit you at your home, and provide you with information on the survey. The interviewer will then ask you a series of questions on the following topics:

    • general health
    • level of physical activity
    • nutrition
    • medication use.

    One or two people per household will be selected to participate in the survey.

    Each interview will last approximately one hour.

    After the interview, we will schedule an appointment for you to visit the CHMS mobile clinic at a time that suits you.

    Second step: A visit to the mobile clinic

    The clinic will be temporarily set up in or near your community. The mobile clinic has been designed to ensure your comfort, safety and privacy.

    At the clinic, trained and certified health specialists will:

    •  take your physical measurements, including your height and weight
    • administer a series of tests to measure your blood pressure at rest, and assess your fitness level, your vision and your musculoskeletal health
    • collect blood and urine samples (biospecimens), which will then be analyzed to evaluate the state of your cardiovascular health, your nutritional status, your exposure to environmental contaminants and the presence of infectious and chronic diseases.

    The clinic appointment will take approximately two hours, depending on the age of the participant.

    After your clinic visit

    After your clinic visit, we will ask you to wear an activity monitor which will record data on your physical activity.

    We will also ask you to provide a second urine sample. The collection of two samples (one during your clinic visit and the other later at your home) will enable more accurate estimates. We will provide prepaid packaging for you to return the activity monitor, as well as the urine sample.

    Report of your test results

    At the end of your clinic visit, we will provide you with a report containing your physical measures results that are immediately available.

    Six to seven months after your visit to the mobile clinic, if you gave your consent, we will send you a final report containing your results for some of the tests that were administered. The final report will include:

    • laboratory analyses of your blood samples
    • laboratory analyses of your urine samples
    • information on your level of physical activity
    • your vision test results
    • your musculoskeletal health results.

    Tests conducted as part of the CHMS do not replace regular health care, and are not intended to be used for diagnosis. However, if a test result is seriously outside a normal range, and you provided consent to receive test results, you will receive an early report well before the final report. Our medical advisor will contact you if your test results require immediate attention. We will also provide a letter for you to present to your doctor or other health-care professional in case you require a follow-up, or if you want further explanation of the results.

    Many of the substances we analyze in blood and urine have never been measured at a national level. Your final report may not contain the results of analyses for these substances, as we are unable to provide an interpretation. One of the objectives of the CHMS is to establish baseline levels of exposure to these substances, at the national level, to support future health research.

    If you wish to receive results excluded from your final report, you can request them by contacting us.

    For a complete list of the laboratory tests conducted, see the appendix .

    Safety of tests

    Statistics Canada takes all necessary precautions to ensure that the collection of health information and samples is safe for participants. Our fully qualified and accredited specialists follow globally recognized precautions and standard clinical procedures when administering tests to participants.

    As with any health examination, some procedures may cause slight discomfort-for example, the sting of a needle when taking a blood sample. Rest assured that we have chosen these measures and tests because they are safe.

    However, we will not ask you to take part in a procedure or test that is not appropriate for your current health status. At the beginning of your clinic visit, we will ask you a series of questions concerning your use of medications and any health problems you may have. After a thorough review of your answers, we will determine whether each test is appropriate for you.

    Privacy and confidentiality

    When the results of the survey are published, your results will be combined with those of other participants to ensure your anonymity.

    Under the Privacy Act, only personal information directly related to the survey can be collected. Thus, we will not collect information that is not required to ensure the success of the survey.

    Confidential

    Under the Statistics Act, we are required to protect the confidentiality of your information. This means that, without your consent, we cannot disclose any information that could identify you or any member of your household.

    We will reimburse transportation, child-care and parking expenses related to your visit to the mobile clinic. Every person selected who takes part in the testing at the mobile clinic will receive $100. If two people are selected from the same household, and they both participate, we will provide $200.

    Why should you participate in this survey?

    By participating in this survey, you will play an important role in the understanding of the health of Canadians and in the development of health services that affect you and your family. In addition, your participation will entitle you to:

    • a report of the results of certain physical and laboratory tests
    • other health information that you would not usually have access to during a regular visit to the doctor, such as an evaluation of your vision and the results of tests measuring exposure to certain environmental contaminants.

    Physical measurements

    Most of the following physical measurements are not usually taken during a regular visit to the doctor. This is, therefore, an opportunity for you to obtain additional information on your health. We will not proceed with any test or any measure without your consent, and the data collected will remain confidential. One of our health specialists will monitor you throughout the whole process, and we will stop a test if you are unable to continue for any reason. You will receive the results for many of these tests the day of your clinic visit. Most physical measures will be taken for all participants, but some will only be taken for people of specific age groups.

    Body composition-all participants

    Body composition measures will provide accurate data on the prevalence of obesity in Canada. The following measures will be taken during the clinic visit:

    • standing height
    • weight
    • neck circumference
    • waist circumference.

    Data from these tests will pave the way for further studies on the link between obesity and heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure and many other health problems. Moreover, these tests will provide key indicators regarding the growth and development of children.

    We will use some body composition measures to calculate your body mass index (BMI). The results obtained will enable us to inform you of the weight class you are in.

    Resting blood pressure and heart rate-6 to 79 years

    We will take your resting blood pressure and heart rate using an automated device that measures the pressure the blood exerts on the walls of your blood vessels.

    The results of these tests provide valuable information on the health of your heart and your blood vessels, and give us a clear picture of the prevalence of hypertension in Canada. High blood pressure, or hypertension, is a major risk factor for heart disease, such as stroke and congestive heart failure. Hypertension is also a risk factor for premature death.

    Vision assessment-various age groups

    The vision assessment consists of the following tests:

    • visual acuity-6 to 19, 20 to 39 (non-gestational diabetics), and 40 to 79
    • intraocular pressure-20 to 39 (non-gestational diabetics), and 40 to 79
    • visual field-20 to 39 (non-gestational diabetics), and 40 to 79
    • retinal photography-20 to 39 (non-gestational diabetics), and 40 to 79.

    The vision assessment will provide nationally representative data for the first time on the vision health of Canadians. We will be able to know, among other things, the prevalence of vision loss, and we will better understand the links between vision loss and other health conditions.

    Measures of physical fitness—various age groups

    Data taken from measures of physical fitness will allow us to examine the ability of Canadians to go about their daily activities, such as housework and hobbies.

    The following tests will measure your cardiovascular fitness, muscular strength and flexibility.

    Cardiovascular fitness—8 to 69 years

    We will measure your cardiovascular fitness by using the modified Canadian Aerobic Fitness Test (commonly known as the step test or stair test). You will be asked to go up and down stairs for several minutes. This test measures the efficiency of your lungs and heart in delivering oxygen to the exercising muscles as well as the efficiency of these exercising muscles in using the oxygen made available. Based on the results, it will be possible to study the relationship between cardiovascular fitness and blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, heart disease and other health indicators identified through laboratory testing.

    Grip strength—6 to 79 years

    Using your hand, you will squeeze the handle of a device called a dynamometer as hard as you can. The test will be performed twice for each hand. It measures the strength of the muscles of the hand and arm. The results are a good indicator of overall muscle strength.

    Sit and reach—6 to 69 years

    Sitting on an exercise mat, you will lean forward at the hips, reaching as far forward as you can. This test measures the flexibility of the lower back, the hamstrings (muscles behind the thigh) and the hip joints.

    Musculoskeletal health—6 to 79 years

    Bone mineral content—6 to 79 years

    You will be asked to sit in a chair with one leg extended in front of you through an X-ray machine. Your knee and ankle will be held firmly in place, while the X-ray machine moves up your leg, taking pictures. For us to get accurate pictures, you will need to maintain this position without moving or speaking for up to 10 minutes.

    This test measures the amount of calcium and other bone minerals in your lower leg bone and is an essential factor in the diagnosis of osteoporosis. Bones that have higher levels of bone minerals and that are denser are generally stronger and less susceptible to breakage than those that have lower levels of bone minerals and are less dense. Analysis of the X-rays of the lower leg can be combined with data from the vertical jump tests for a more comprehensive assessment of muscle and bone function.

    The X-ray machine emits radiation (X-rays) in amounts smaller than those generally used by a dentist to take your dental x-rays. Still, much like exposure to other sources of radiation, such as what is natural in our environment, exposure to radiation has the potential to harm the tissue cells of an individual. To ensure the amount of radiation used is as low as possible the X-ray machine is inspected regularly and is only operated by qualified X-ray technologists that have been specially trained to use the equipment.

    In spite of the low amount of radiation used for this test, for the purpose of this survey, extra precautions will be taken to avoid radiation exposure to a fetus. All female respondents aged 8 to 59 will be asked the Pregnancy Screening Questions designed to exclude any individuals who are pregnant or are at risk for pregnancy.

    Vertical jumps—6 to 79 years

    We will use two tests to measure your leg power:

    • the multiple two-legged hopping test, which will measure the maximum power generated when bouncing on your toes
    • the vertical jump test, which will measure the maximum power when jumping.

    Both tests will be performed on a platform that measures the forces generated when you jump.

    Measures taken at home after the clinic visit—various age groups

    Physical activity monitor—3 to 79 years

    We will ask you to wear a physical activity monitor for the seven days following your clinic visit. This device will record data on your physical activity patterns and body movements throughout this period.

    The activity monitor is a small waterproof device powered by a watch battery that must be worn on the belt we provide you. It does not present any danger and is not bulky. We will give you detailed instructions on how to wear and use it at the mobile clinic.

    This device will measure your level of physical activity, including the intensity, time (date and time), duration and frequency of the activity. Using these data, we will learn more about the physical activity levels of Canadians and better understand the links between physical activity and overall health status.

    Urine samples—3 to 79 years

    During your clinic visit, we will ask you to provide a first urine sample. We will also provide you with instructions on how to collect and send a second sample from your home. The collection of two samples will allow us to better estimate the levels of potassium, sodium and iodine in the Canadian population.

    Laboratory tests—various age groups

    The following sections provide a summary of the laboratory tests that will be conducted on blood and urine samples. A complete list of these analyses is available in the appendix of this document.

    Not all tests apply to every participant. Therefore, your final report will not include results for every test.

    Blood tests—various age groups

    Chemical analysis profile—3 to 79 years

    We will analyze a variety of substances in your blood, including enzymes and electrolytes.

    Bone health—6 to 79 years

    We will measure the following components in your blood to help us assess the health of your bones: N-terminal propeptide of type I collagen, C-telopeptide of type I collagen, parathyroid hormone and vitamin D.

    Cardiovascular health—various age groups

    We will test your blood for levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL), known as "good cholesterol" (it helps remove cholesterol from the blood), and for levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL), known as "bad cholesterol" (it can lead to cholesterol build-up in the blood vessels).

    We will also test for total cholesterol, triglycerides (a type of fat that the body uses to produce energy).

    Complete blood count—3 to 79 years

    We will evaluate several components found in your blood, including white blood cells, red blood cells, hemoglobin and platelets.

    Diabetes—various age groups

    Diabetes is a chronic disease that stems from the body's inability to use and store glucose, a type of sugar that provides energy to cells. We will analyze your glucose levels and glycated hemoglobin (A1C). This provides an indication of your average blood sugar levels over the last two to three months.

    Environmental exposure—various age groups

    We will analyze your blood samples to determine your exposure to substances found in the environment. These substances include cadmium, lead, chromium (in red blood cells), perfluoroakyl substances and total mercury.

    Nutritional status—various age groups

    We will conduct tests that will measure the following components in your blood to help determine your nutritional status: ferritin, folate (in red blood cells), homocysteine, vitamin B12 and vitamin D.

    Thyroid status—3 to 79 years

    The thyroid is a gland that helps regulate body temperature and the metabolism of proteins, fats and sugars. A thyroid disorder can lead to many chronic diseases, such as heart disease and diabetes.

    Urine tests—various age groups

    Environmental exposure—various age groups

    We will use the urine sample collected at the clinic to analyze your exposure to over 40 chemical substances found in the environment, including:

    • arsenic (used in pesticides and naturally present in the environment)
    • bisphenol A (BPA) (used in the manufacture of dental sealants, packaging, receipts, etc.)
    • nicotine.

    We will also test for the presence of several types of organophosphate insecticides and parabens (which are used as preservatives in many cosmetics and body care products), alternative plasticizer metabolites, metabolites of phthalates, metals, and trace elements.

    Nutritional status—various age groups

    We will use your urine samples to analyze indicators of your nutritional status, including iodine, which is essential to the proper functioning of the thyroid gland.

    Markers of infectious diseases and environmental contaminants—various age groups

    Infectious disease marker test

    As part of the CHMS, we will test one infectious disease marker, Chlamydia trachomatis for the 14 to 59 years age group.

    In the event of a result outside the established reference range, we will send you a letter recommending that you consult a primary health-care professional authorized to perform a complete medical examination.

    What is chlamydia?

    Chlamydia is the bacteria that causes one of the most common sexually transmitted infections in Canada. The majority of people infected have no symptoms and do not know they are carriers. If left untreated, chlamydia can cause health problems and infertility. It can easily be treated, often with a single round of antibiotics. There are several types of chlamydia. The CHMS will only test for markers of Chlamydia trachomatis in urine.

    Reporting process related to chlamydia

    Your samples will only be tested for markers of chlamydia if you consent that:

    • these tests be performed
    • we report results outside the established reference range to local public-health authorities, and provide them with your contact information.

    If you do not wish to share your information with local public-health authorities, we will not do the tests to screen for markers of chlamydia.

    If your chlamydia test results are outside the established reference range, the CHMS medical advisor will contact you long before you receive your final report.

    Reporting process related to environmental contaminants

    Results of tests above a certain limit for some environmental contaminants analyzed in the CHMS must be reported to local public-health authorities. If this is the case in your province, we will provide you with a list of these tests and will request your consent before conducting them.

    Information for parents and guardians of children and youth 17 and under

    Although the information provided throughout this document also applies to children and youth participants, this section is intended to provide additional information specific to their participation.

    Youth privacy and confidentiality

    There is a need to collect the most accurate information possible from CHMS participants as it can lead to better health-care services, programs and policies. Participants who know that someone in the household can hear their answers when taking part in the interview may feel uncomfortable, and this could affect the quality of their answers. This is why we prefer to complete most of the interview with youths 12 years of age or older privately.

    We would like to inform parents or guardians of adolescents 14 to 17 years of age that, if their adolescent consents to participate in the survey and to receive his or her results, we will send them directly to them. The results for participants under 14 years of age will be sent to the parent or guardian.

    In-home interview

    During the in-home interview, child participants aged 3 to 11, and youth participants, aged 12 to 17, will be asked questions similar to those used for adults. Parents or guardians of child participants will answer questions on behalf of their child. However, if the child is present, he or she may participate. Youth aged 12 to 17 will answer most questions themselves but their parent or guardian can provide help if required. Verbal consent is obtained from a parent before their youth aged 12 to 15 answers any questions.

    Visit to the mobile clinic

    At the clinic, skilled health professionals will take direct physical measures that will allow us to assess your child's health. You can stay with your child during the clinic visit if you wish.

    Children over 6 years of age will do most of the physical measurement tests, while children aged 3 to 5 are only asked to take part in the body composition tests.

    We will also collect blood and urine samples from children and youth aged 3 to 17. When drawing blood from young children, all health specialists use techniques based on training received at the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario. A numbing cream patch will be available for children to reduce the discomfort caused by the prick of the needle.

    Children and youth will receive a physical activity monitor that we ask them to wear for seven days following the clinic visit. We will also request that a second urine sample be collected during this period.

    Consent process

    Consent form

    If you are 14 years of age or older, we will ask you at the beginning of your clinic visit to provide your written consent to:

    • participate in the physical measure tests
    • have X-rays taken
    • receive reports of your test results
    • allow Statistics Canada to test your blood and urine for diseases and contaminants that might require mandatory reporting in your province of residence and to contact you, as well as the appropriate provincial authorities, if the results are outside the established reference range
    • allow storage of your blood and urine for use in future health studies
    • allow storage of your DNA for use in future health studies.
    The consent form states that you can, at any time, remove yourself or remove your child from any part of the survey, even if you had previously provided consent. However, once results that require mandatory reporting have been provided to provincial authorities, these results cannot be withdrawn.

    What it means to sign the consent form

    By signing the consent form, you confirm that:

    • you have been informed of the purpose of the survey, of how the information collected will be used and who will use it
    • you have had the opportunity to review the information on the survey and ask questions
    • you understand what is involved in taking part in the survey
    • you have been informed that you can withdraw from the survey at any time, or can decline to participate in any test or measurement

    Assent form

    If a child aged 3 to 13 is selected to participate in the survey, we will ask the parent or guardian to accompany the child to the clinic and sign the consent form.

    In addition, children aged 6 to 13 will be asked to sign an assent form to confirm that they agree to participate in the survey. The form informs the child that:

    • we would like him/her to take part in some tests for the Canadian Health Measures Survey
    • a small amount of his/her blood and urine samples will be collected
    • he/she does not have to participate in any part of the survey that he or she does not wish to participate in.

    The form also describes a few examples of tests that will be administered to the child.

    Storage of your samples

    With your consent, a portion of the blood and urine samples you provide will be stored in the CHMS biobank. We will also extract and retain a sample of your DNA from the blood collected. These blood, urine and DNA samples will be stored indefinitely for use in future health research projects. Only researchers who submit projects that meet the strict conditions imposed by Statistics Canada, in particular those relating to confidentiality, will have access to these samples.

    Why store your blood, urine and DNA samples?

    All participants who consent to storage of their blood, urine and DNA can expect that their samples will be used for important health research that will benefit all Canadians.

    In addition, the storage of your samples:

    • avoids the need for researchers to take samples from a new group for each project, giving researchers a head start as soon as the need for research is identified
    • enables Canadians to benefit from advances in science and medicine.

    What is DNA?

    DNA is the blueprint of all living things. It contains the genetic "language" describing how your body is built and works, and a portion of this information is passed from one generation to the next. DNA analysis is the decoding of this language into its millions of "words", the combination of which is unique to each individual.

    Why extract and store your DNA?

    Collecting DNA samples is important for the following reasons:

    • The genetic research field has enormous potential health benefits by enabling a deeper understanding of health issues and leading ideally to the discovery of new treatments for diseases.
    • Samples could provide information on the role that genes play in health problems, whether acting alone or in combination with other factors, such as lifestyle and environment.

    How and where will the samples be stored?

    Samples of blood, urine and DNA will be frozen and stored anonymously at the CHMS biobank, currently located at the Public Health Agency of Canada's National Microbiology Laboratory in Winnipeg. This is a maximum-security facility that meets international security standards for this type of laboratory.

    We will protect your privacy

    Your blood, urine and DNA samples will always be kept secure and confidential, under the authority of the Statistics Act.

    We will never:

    • store or test your samples if you did not provide consent
    • provide information about your samples to any law-enforcement agency
    • share your personal information or your test results with insurance companies or employers
    • allow any of your information or data to be used in paternity suits or any other legal proceedings.

    What do we mean by "anonymous"?

    Samples of blood, urine and DNA will be kept in tubes labelled with a bar code. No other information will be associated to your samples.

    Only authorized Statistics Canada employees working on the CHMS will be able to associate codes on your samples to other information you have provided. This will be done following strict procedures. Your name and address will be kept in a separate file at our head office. No one outside of Statistics Canada will have access to your personal information.

    What about your child's samples?

    If your child is under the age of 14 and participates in the survey, we will ask for your written consent to collect his or her blood, urine and DNA samples, and to store these samples.

    If you consent to the storage of your child's blood, urine and DNA samples, we will contact your child after he or she reaches the age of 14 to inform him or her about the stored samples. We will also inform him or her of the steps to take if he or she wishes to withdraw the samples or DNA from the biobank.

    Under what conditions will researchers have access to blood, urine and DNA samples?

    To gain restricted access to anonymous samples for analysis and studies, researchers must:

    • use the samples to conduct scientific analyses of national interest
    • comply with strict security guidelines
    • submit a research project that receives support through a scientific review process
    • obtain approval for the project from a research ethics board
    • take an oath to protect data confidentiality
    • provide a summary of their project that will be posted on the Statistics Canada website.

    What about results from future studies?

    Results from any study that uses stored CHMS biobank samples will be published by Statistics Canada or respected scientific or health research journals. Results will only be presented as aggregate data. No individual or identifiable data will ever be published.

    You will not receive any individual results from these projects. However, after the research results have been published, you will be able to access them through our website, where you can find out how your anonymous samples have been used to benefit the health of all Canadians. Approved researchers will also be given the opportunity to access your anonymous results.

    You have the last word

    At any time after the survey, you can request that your blood, urine and DNA samples be withdrawn from the biobank and destroyed. Information on biobank projects is provided on the CHMS page of the Statistics Canada website as it becomes available.

    Linking and sharing your data

    Data linkage

    During the household interview and the clinic visit, we will inform you about the possibility of linkages between the information you provided to the CHMS and other surveys or administrative data sources.

    Data linkage, also known as record linkage, combines information on survey participants from at least two different sources. This is done only for statistical and research purposes.

    If you agree to data linkage, we will:

    • ask you for your health card number to help with the linkage process
    • combine the information we collected during this survey with some of the information that your provincial health department, health registries or other recognized health organizations already have on file about you
    • remove personal identifiers such as your name, street address and health card number from the linked file as soon as the linkage is complete
    • destroy all linkage files at the end of the project for which the linkage was done.

    Only Statistics Canada employees in Statistics Canada offices will perform data linkage. All linked data will remain confidential under the Statistics Act. We will not provide any information about you to the ministry of health in your province or to any other organization.

    Data sharing

    We will also ask whether you consent that the information you provide through the CHMS be shared with Health Canada (HC) and the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC). Data sharing enables us to reduce the number of times we have to survey Canadians.

    If you consent to the sharing of your data, your data will be shared with Health Canada and the Public Health Agency of Canada under the following conditions:

    • With the exception of the postal code, your name, address, date of birth and health card number will be removed from all files before the data are sent.
    • Your information will not be shared with any other party without your consent.
    • HC and the PHAC will use this information only for statistical and research purposes, and must ensure confidentiality.
    • Any information from the ministry of health in your province or from your health records will not be shared.

    Your data will not be shared or linked if you do not want them to be. However, sharing data with Health Canada and the Public Health Agency of Canada has many benefits. It allows researchers to fully exploit the information we collect to improve health policies and, in turn, the health of Canadians. Linking data with other sources of health data helps governments monitor, evaluate and modify policies in health care, health promotion and use of health services. For more information on data linkage at Statistics Canada.

    Appendix—Complete list of CHMS laboratory tests

    This appendix lists all of the blood and urine sample tests conducted by the CHMS. Not all of these tests will be included in the final report of your test results. Whether or not a result is included in the final report depends on your age group and sex, whether you were fasting prior to your visit to the mobile clinic, whether the test is being conducted on a subsample of survey participants, and whether there are national guidelines or reference ranges for the test.

    Whole blood, plasma, and serum tests

    Diabetes

    • glucose
    • glycated hemoglobin A1c
    • insulin

    Nutritional status

    • ferritin
    • red blood cell folate
    • vitamin B12
    • vitamin D3 [25(OH)]
    • vitamin D3 [3-epi-25(OH)]
    • vitamin D2 [25(OH)]
    • vitamin D Total [25-OH]

    Thyroid status

    • free thyroxine
    • thyroid stimulating hormone

    Environmental exposure (EE)-Acrylamide

    • acrylamide hemoglobin adduct
    • glycidamide hemoglobin adduct

    EE-Metals and trace elements

    EE-Perfluoroalkyl substances

    • perfluorobutane sulfonate (PFBS)
    • perfluorodecanoic acid (PFDA)
    • perfluorohexane sulfonate (PFHxS)
    • perfluorohexanoic acid (PFHxA)
    • perfluoro-n-butyric acid (PFBA)
    • perfluorononanoic acid (PFNA)
    • perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS)
    • perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA)
    • perfluoroundecanoic acid (PFUDA)

    EE-Tobacco

    • free cotinine

    EE-Other

    • pooled serum organohalogens

    Complete blood count

    • hemoglobin
      • hemoglobin
      • mean corpuscular hemoglobin
      • mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration
    • platelets
      • platelet count
    • red blood cell
      • hematocrit
      • mean corpuscular volume
      • red cell distribution width
      • red blood cell count (RBC)
    • white blood cell
      • white blood cell count (WBC)

    Chemistry panel

    • alanine aminotransferase
    • albumin
    • alkaline phosphatase
    • aspartate aminotransferase
    • calcium
    • chloride
    • creatinine
    • gamma-glutamyl transferase
    • magnesium
    • phosphorus
    • potassium
    • sodium
    • total protein
    • urea
    • uric acid

    Cardiovascular health

    • high sensitivity C-reactive protein (HsCRP)
    • homocysteine

    Apolipoproteins

    • apolipoprotein A1
    • apolipoprotein B

    Lipid panel

    • low density lipoprotein-cholesterol (calculated) (LDL-C)
    • high density lipoprotein-cholesterol (HDL-C)
    • total cholesterol
    • total cholesterol/high density lipoprotein-cholesterol ratio (calculated)
    • triglycerides

    Bone health

    • C-telopeptide of collagen type I
    • parathyroid hormone
    • procollagen type I N-terminal propeptide

    Urine tests

    General characterization

    • creatinine
    • specific gravity

    Nutritional status

    • iodine
    • potassium
    • sodium

    Parabens

    • butylparaben
    • ethylparaben
    • methylparaben
    • propylparaben

    Environmental exposure (EE)-Organophosphate insecticides

    • diethylphosphate (DEP)
    • diethylthiophosphate (DETP)
    • diethyldithiophosphate (DEDTP)
    • dimethylphosphate (DMP)
    • dimethylthiophosphate (DMTP)
    • dimethyldithiophosphate (DMDTP)

    EE-Alternate plasticizers

    • 1,2-(trans-cyclohexane-dicarboxylate)-mono-4-methyloctyl ester (trans-MINCH)
    • cis-cyclohexane-1,2-dicarboxylic acid (cis-CHDA)
    • 1,2-(cyclohexane-dicarboxylate)-mono-(7-hydroxy-4-methyl) octyl ester (OH-MINCH)
    • 1,2-(cyclohexane-dicarboxylate)-mono-(7-oxo-4-methyl) octyl ester (oxo-MINCH)
    • 1,2-(trans-cyclohexane-dicarboxylate)-mono-(7-carboxylate-4-methyl) heptyl ester (trans-cx-MINCH)
    • 1,2-(cis-cyclohexane-dicarboxylate)-mono-(7-carboxylate-4-methyl) heptyl ester (cis-cx-MINCH)
    • 2,2,4-trimethyl-1,2-pentanediol (TMPD)
    • 2,2,4-trimethyl-3-hydroxy valeric acid (HTMV)
    • 1,2,4-benzenetricarboxylate 1-(2-ethylhexyl) ester (1-MEHTM)
    • 1,2,4-benzenetricarboxylate 2-(2-ethylhexyl) ester (2-MEHTM)
    • 1,2,4-benzenetricarboxylate 4-(2-éthylhexyl) ester (4-MEHTM)

    EE-Tobacco

    Nicotine and its metabolites

    • free cotinine
    • trans-3-hydroxycotinine

    (NNK metabolites) (4-(methyl-nitrosamino)-1-butanone)

    • total NNAL

    EE-Pyrethroid pesticides

    • cis-3-(2,2-dibromovinyl)-2,2-dimethylcyclopropane carboxylic acid (cis-DBCA)
    • cis-3-(2,2-dichlorovinyl)-2,2-dimethylcyclopropane carboxylic acid (cis-DCCA)
    • 4-fluoro-3-phenoxybenzoic acid (4-F-3-PBA)
    • 3-phenoxybenzoic acid (3-PBA)
    • trans-3-(2,2-dichlorovinyl)-2,2-dimethylcyclopropane carboxylic acid (trans-DCCA)

    EE-Other

    • bisphenol A (BPA)
    • ethylene thiourea (ETU)
    • ortho-phenylphenol (OPP)

    Infection Markers

    EE-Phthalate metabolites

    • mono benzyl phthalate (MBzP)
    • mono-3-carboxypropyl phthalate (MCPP)
    • mono-3-hydroxy-n-butyl phthalate (3OH-MBP)
    • mono cyclohexyl phthalate (MCHP)
    • mono-(2-ethyl-5-hydroxyhexyl) phthalate (MEHHP)
    • mono-(2-ethyl-5-oxohexyl) phthalate (MEOHP)
    • mono-2-ethylhexyl phthalate (MEHP)
    • mono ethyl phthalate (MEP)
    • mono-iso-butyl phthalate (MiBP)
    • mono-isononyl phthalate (MiNP)
    • mono-n-butyl phthalate (MnBP)
    • mono-n-octyl phthalate (MOP)
    • mono-methyl phthalate (MMP)
    • mono-carboxy-n-heptyl phthalate (MCHpP)
    • mono (2-ethyl-5-carboxypentyl) phthalate (MECPP)
    • mono (2-carboxymethylhexyl) phthalate (MCMHP)
    • mono (carboxyisooctyl) phthalate (MCIOP)
    • mono (oxoisononyl) phthalate (MOINP)
    • mono (hydroxyisononyl) phthalate (MHINP)
    • monocarboxyisononyl phthalate (MCiNP)
    • mono-isodecyl phthalate (MIDP)
    • monooxoisodecyl phthalate (MOiDP)
    • monohydroxyisodecyl phthalate (MHiDP)

    EE-Metals and trace elements

    • boron
    • cadmium Footnote 2
    • Speciated arsenic
      • arsenobetaïne and arsenocholine
      • arsenic acid
      • arsenous acid
      • dimethylarsinic acid
      • monomethylarsenic acid
      • total inorganic arsenic Footnote 2
  • Block Information on Published data

    Published data

    Statistics Canada publishes the results of its surveys in many formats. To find all the documents related to this survey, follow the links below and type the name of the survey in the search engine located at the left of your screen to filter the results.

    Data: You will find tables, profiles of a community or region, thematic maps, public use microdata files, and data visualization tools.

    Analysis: You will have direct access to Stats in brief (e.g., releases from The Daily, fact sheets), articles and reports, and journals and periodicals.

  • Block Information on Biobank

    CHMS Biobank

    As part of the Canadian Health Measures Survey (CHMS), blood, urine and DNA samples (biospecimens) are collected from consenting participants. With respondents' consent, these samples are then stored at the CHMS Biobank located at the National Microbiology Laboratory in Winnipeg for use in future health studies.

  • Block Information on Respondent relations

    Respondent relations

    Withdrawal of biospecimens

    If you consented to the storage of your/your child's blood, urine or DNA samples and would like to withdraw these biospecimens from any future health studies, please e-mail statcan.chms-ecms.statcan@canada.ca with the following information to ensure that the correct samples are removed and destroyed:

    • Full name
    • Date of birth
    • Home address at the time of the mobile examination center visit
    • Approximate date of mobile examination center visit

    Details on studies which have been approved to use the Canadian Health Measures Survey biobank specimens are available on the Biobank page.

    Change of address

    If you/your child move to a new address, please fill out the change of address card provided during the clinic visit or e-mail statcan.chms-ecms.statcan@canada.ca with the following information:

    • Full name
    • Date of birth
    • Complete new home address
    • Home address at the time of the mobile examination center visit
    • Approximate date of the mobile examination center visit

    General enquiries

    For more information related to you/your child's participation in the Canadian Health Measures Survey, please contact our respondent relations team:

  • For more information about this survey (questionnaires, definitions, data sources and methods used): survey number 5071

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