13 Canadian provinces and territories
The Canadian Cancer Registry (CCR) is an administrative survey that collects information on cancer incidence in Canada. The CCR is a collaborative effort between the 13 Canadian provincial and territorial cancer registries and the Health Statistics Division of Statistics Canada, where the data are housed. Ultimate authority and responsibility for the degree of coverage and the quality of the data reside with the provinces and territories. Beginning with reference year 1992, information collected by the provincial and territorial cancer registries has been reported to the CCR. The data that come into the CCR describe both, the individual with the cancer, and the characteristics of the cancer. Longitudinal data are available on each cancer patient, i.e., new primary cancers occurring for previous cancer patients are identified. Since each Canadian province and territory has a legislated responsibility for cancer collection and control, reporting is virtually complete.
NOTE: Statistics Canada does not impute missing data on cancer records.
The patient-oriented Canadian Cancer Registry (CCR) evolved from the event-oriented National Cancer Incidence Reporting System (NCIRS). Beginning with reference year 1992, the CCR replaced the NCIRS as Statistics Canada's vehicle for collecting information about cancer across the country.
The primary objective of the CCR is to provide a large database to study cancer patterns and trends and to monitor differences in cancer risks among different populations. Information about cancer incidence and survival in Canada is generated by the CCR. The CCR is a patient-based system, in which are recorded the kind and number (incidence) of primary cancers diagnosed for each person over a number of years until death.
The information is used for descriptive and analytic epidemiological studies to:
- Identify risk factors for the cancer;
- Plan, monitor and evaluate a broad range of cancer control programs (e.g., screening); and
- Conduct research in health services and economics.
(Cancer Registry. Longitudinal data are available for each cancer patient, i.e., new primary cancers occurring for previous cancer patients are identified.)
(13 Canadian provincial and territorial cancer registries.
Each provincial and territorial cancer registry records all cases of cancer in its population by combining information from sources such as:
- Cancer clinic files and radiotherapy reports,
- Records from in-patient hospitals,
- Out-patient clinics and private hospitals,
- Pathology and other laboratory/autopsy reports,
- Radiology and screening program reports,
- Reports from physicians in private practice, and
- Reports on cancer deaths from Vital Statistics registrars.)
(The Master file, for incidence, is updated annually and released at the end of July. When death information is available, it is added to the file and released on an ad hoc basis.)
(All Canadian residents, alive or dead, who have been diagnosed with cancer)
Emergency Room (ER/ED)
(Some records come from outpatient, inpatient & emergency rooms, but they may also come from autopsy reports, death certificates, and local cancer registry data)
(The Canadian Cancer Registry was last updated on July 31, 2016;
This profile for the B.R.I.D.G.E. site was last updated on June 8, 2017.)
(The Canadian Cancer Registry is a dynamic database and continues to add new cases of cancer. It started in 1992 and to date ~3 Million cases are included.)
(Currently, approximately 180,000 new cases of cancer are added to the Canadian Cancer Registry each year)
Data are collected for all units of the target population, therefore no sampling is done
(Not applicable, as data collection is ongoing)
(DOB is recorded)
<18 years = 1%
>65 years = 61%
Males = 50%
Females = 50%
(Reflective of the Canadian Population)
13 Canadian provinces and territories
(Year / Month / Day)
- Date of death,
- Province/territory or country of death,
- Death registration number,
- Underlying cause of death, and
- Information re: autopsy confirming cause of death is recorded.
The patient data are regularly linked to mortality data so that the date and cause of death of every cancer patient is eventually known.
Autopsy is usually done to confirm the cause of death
No socioeconomic information is included; the file does not include the health insurance number.
Physician & Practioner Info
Diagnoses/Signs & Symptoms
(The diagnosis of the neoplasm is coded according to the International Classification of Diseases, 9th revision (through 2000) and then 10th revision (beginning 2001).
ICD-9 Cancer code is used to describe the site of the tumour, and is supplemented with an ICD-O-2 or O-3 Histology and an ICD-O-2 or O-3 Behaviour.)
NOTE: Quebec data are not available for diagnosis - years 2011 to 2014
This is available in an analysable format
In addition to information on cancer incidence, data are available about the characteristics of patients with single and multiple tumours, as well as about the nature and frequency of these tumours (staging information is also recorded). Since patients' records remain active on the CCR until confirmation of their death, survival rates for the various forms of cancer can be calculated. In addition, the CCR has the capability of identifying and eliminating the duplicate reporting of tumours.
The Canadian Council of Cancer Registries recommends that the following tumours should be reported to the CCR:
- All primary, malignant tumours (topographies C00.0-C80.9 and behaviour codes of 3);
- All carcinoma in situ / intraepithelial / noninfiltrating / noninvasive tumours (behaviour codes of 2); except cervix (topographies C53.0-C53.9); and except prostate (topography C61.9);
- All borderline malignancies (behaviour codes of 1);
- Primary, benign tumours of the meninges, brain, spinal cord, cranial nerves and other parts of the central nervous system (topographies C70.0-C72.9 with behaviour codes of 0); pituitary, craniopharyngeal duct and pineal gland (topographies C75.1, C75.2, C75.3 with behaviour codes of 0);
- EXCEPT all (behaviour codes of 1, 2, 3) skin cancers (topographies C44.0-C44.9) listed as neoplasms, NOS (histologies 8000-8005), epithelial neoplasms (histologies 8010-8046), squamous cell neoplasms (histologies 8050-8084) and basal cell neoplasms (histologies 8090-8110) are not reportable tumours.
However, the Canadian Cancer Registry is starting to investigate standards for including treatment data in another year or two
(Not applicable as not determined yet)
However, minimal information is available, i.e., there is information as to whether the diagnosis is the result of a laboratory test, and some of the factors for staging incorporate laboratory results.
Telephone: +1 613-951-1746
Health Statistics Division
Tunneys Pasture Driveway
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0T6
Telephone: +1 613-612-9925
(The CCR data are used by the Public Health Agency of Canada, Health Canada, the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries (NAACCR), the National Cancer Institute of Canada, the Canadian Cancer Society, the International Agency for Research in Cancer (IARC), provincial and territorial ministries of health, pharmaceutical companies, medical and health researchers and the general public.
Requests for custom tabulations can be made by the public, but access to the micro data is limited to those who enter into data sharing agreements (federal government health departments and provincial and territorial cancer registries) or who access the data through Statistics Canada's Research Data Centres.)
There is a cost associated with custom tabulations
(PDF tabular tables)
1. Goffin JR, Flanagan WM, Miller AB, Fitzgerald NR, Memon S, Wolfson MC, Evans WK. Biennial lung cancer screening in Canada with smoking cessation-outcomes and cost-effectiveness. Lung Cancer. 2016 Nov;101:98-103.
2. Ellison LF. Increasing survival from leukemia among adolescents and adults in Canada: A closer look. Health Rep. 2016 Jul 20;27(7):19-26.
3. Evans WK, Flanagan WM, Miller AB, et al. Implementing Low Dose CT Screening for Lung Cancer in Canada: Implications of Alternative At Risk Populations, Screening Frequency and Duration. Curr Oncol. 2016 Jun;23(3):e179-87
4. Ellison LF. Differences in cancer survival in Canada by sex. Health Rep. 2016 Apr;27(4):19-27.
5. Popadiuk C, Gauvreau CL, Bhavsar M, Nadeau C, Asakawa K, Flanagan WM, Wolfson MC, Coldman AJ, Memon S, Fitzgerald N, Lacombe J, Miller AB. Using the Cancer Risk Management Model to evaluate the health and economic impacts of cytology compared with human papillomavirus DNA testing for primary cervical cancer screening in Canada. Curr Oncol. 2016 Feb;23(Suppl 1):S56-63.
6. Goffin JR, Flanagan WM, Miller AB, Fitzgerald NR, Memon S, Wolfson MC, Evans WK. Cost-effectiveness of Lung Cancer Screening in Canada. JAMA Oncol. 2015 Sep;1(6):807-13.
7. Fitzgerald NR, Flanagan WM, Evans WK, Miller AB; Canadian Partnership against Cancer (CPAC) Cancer Risk Management (CRM) Lung Cancer Working.. Eligibility for low-dose computerized tomography screening among asbestos-exposed individuals. Scand J Work Environ Health. 2015 Jul;41(4):407-12.
8. Flanagan WM, Evans WK, Fitzgerald NR, Goffin JR, Miller AB, Wolfson MC. Performance of the cancer risk management model lung cancer screening module. Health Rep. 2015 May;26(5):11-8.
9. Coldman AJ, Phillips N, Brisson J, Flanagan W, Wolfson M, Nadeau C, Fitzgerald N, Miller AB. Using the Cancer Risk Management Model to evaluate colorectal cancer screening options for Canada. Curr Oncol. 2015 Apr;22(2):e41-50.
10. Ellison LF. Adjusting relative survival estimates for cancer mortality in the general population. Health Rep. 2014 Nov;25(11):3-9.