The Canadian Study of Health and Aging (CSHA) was planned in 1989 as a national longitudinal study to provide accurate statistics on the number of people who have dementia, including Alzheimer's disease, in Canada. The study also covers a range of other health topics. The CSHA involved 10,263 people aged 65 or over, sampled from 36 communities across Canada. Representative samples were drawn from the community and from institutions, and participants were assessed at 5-yearly intervals: in 1991, 1996, and for a final time in 2001. The objectives initially focused on the epidemiology of dementia, and the study has provided estimates of prevalence, incidence and risk factors for dementia, and the burden it places on family caregivers. The CSHA has also described patterns of disability, frailty and healthy aging, and has recorded utilization of health services for different diagnostic groups.
Strategic and methodological considerations dictated a multicentre study with an overall sample of 10,250 people aged 65 or over. For reasons of regional equity, equal sized samples were drawn from the five geographic regions of Canada (British Columbia, the Prairie provinces, Ontario, Quebec, and the Atlantic region); the field work was implemented by 18 study centres.
Representative samples of persons aged 65 or over on October 31, 1990 were drawn in 39 urban centres and nearby rural areas in the 10 Canadian provinces. Geographic sampling areas were defined using postal codes. It was estimated that these areas contained roughly 66% of the elderly Canadian population. The final sample included 9,008 participants from the community and 1,255 from long-term care institutions
Health Canada. HRDP. Seniors' Independence Research Program
University of Toronto students, staff and faculty.