Acute Care

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Hospital-based acute inpatient care is a key component of the continuum of health services in Canada. It provides necessary treatment for a disease or severe episode of illness for a short period of time. The goal is to discharge patients as soon as they are healthy and stable.

CIHI provides valuable insight on volumes and types of cases presenting to Canadian hospitals. We also facilitate the collection of standardized information on acute inpatient care through these databases:

Stakeholders, including health facilities, health regions, ministries of health and academic researchers, use this information for resource and service planning, policy decisions and research.

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Acute care information

 Reports and analyses
 Databases and data sources
 Related content

Reports and analyses

Learn about features, benefits and how to access eDAD Reports.

Databases and data sources

Discharge Abstract Database
The Discharge Abstract Database (DAD) contains demographic, administrative and clinical data on inpatient hospital discharges. Facilities in all provinces and territories except Quebec are required to report to the DAD. Quebec acute inpatient records are submitted to CIHI through a different process and are included in the Hospital Morbidity Database.

For information about data submission standards for the DAD, see the Discharge Abstract Database (DAD) Abstracting Manual.

Hospital Morbidity Database
The Hospital Morbidity Database (HMDB) is a national data holding that captures administrative, clinical and demographic information on hospital inpatient events. It contains inpatient data collected via the DAD and inpatient records submitted from Quebec. Please note that Quebec day surgery records are part of the HMDB population as of 2012–2013.


Metadata is information about data. It helps users understand and interpret data from a specific source.

Find out more about the following data sources:

Key Resources

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