Government of Canada renews investment in largest Canadian study on aging

Ontario: With Canada’s demographic landscape shifting as its older adult population continues to grow, long-term studies focusing on the health of older adults are not only important for this growing older population, they also provide the knowledge needed to ensure the health of future generations. This is why longitudinal studies—when the same cohort of people is followed over time with continuous or repeated monitoring of health outcomes— are so important. They track the trajectory of the health of a population as it ages, providing insights into how Canadians can live healthier and longer lives.

To capture data and insights on how to maintain healthy lives as we age, today the Honourable Filomena Tassi, Minister of Labour, on behalf of the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Health, announced an investment of $61.5 million from the Government of Canada for the next phase of the Canadian Longitudinal Study on Aging (CLSA). This funding includes $52 million from Canadian Institutes of Health Research and $9.5 million from the Canada Foundation for Innovation.

The CLSA is the largest and longest study of its kind in Canada, and includes over 50,000 Canadians between the ages of 45 and 85 whose health will be tracked for at least 20 years. Led by Dr. Parminder Raina at McMaster University, Dr. Susan Kirkland at Dalhousie University, and Dr. Christina Wolfson at McGill University, the CLSA is a collaboration between 160 researchers located at 26 institutions across the country.

Since 2015, CLSA researchers have collected data from participants in the study at three-year intervals. This investment will ensure that the collection of this vital data continues. Researchers worldwide have been accessing CLSA data for insight into a wide range of areas such as healthy aging, mental health of older adults, and age-friendly environments.

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