Canada’s Health Data Repositories: Challenges of Organization, Discoverability and Access

  • Ali Shiri University of Alberta
  • Gail M. Thornton University of Alberta


Evidence-based medicine relies on health data. Open health data initiatives need to be supported with data repositories that are optimized for searchability and discoverability. Five Canadian open health data repositories were evaluated for metadata-based searching, browsing, and navigational functionalities. In the different national, provincial and institutional open data repositories evaluated, the preliminary findings reveal the variability in these functionalities. This research will contribute to the development of guidelines and best practices for implementing metadata and searching and browsing functionalities for open health data repositories that will ultimately lead to a more interoperable open health data environment.