Max Rady College of Medicine

Concept: Physician Service Areas (PSAs) That Fit Inside the Regional Health Authorities (RHAs)

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Concept Description

Last Updated: 2003-02-16


    Research results are often subdivided into different regions of Manitoba in order to compare findings. (e.g. How do pap smear numbers differ by region ?). One way to sub-divide the provincial data is into the physician utilization regions.

PSAs Within the RHAs

    The Physician Service Areas (PSAs) fit inside the Regional Health Authorities (RHAs) in Manitoba. The 52 PSAs, (60 if Winnipeg is further subdivided using Winnipeg Areas ) that have been developed by MCHP to be totally contained within the RHA boundaries. The original physician utilization of service regions (or service areas) are based on those defined by Manitoba Health, and further developed by Ron Wall, Bogdan Bogdanovic, Leonard MacWilliam and David Patton for looking at physician utilization. The service areas used by MCHP have been modified by Charlyn Black and Sandra Peterson so they do not cross over RHA boundaries; the flow of patients will thus not be followed as well as in the original physician service areas. Information on the original service areas is available from MCHP.

    Winnipeg can be further subdivided into the nine Winnipeg sub-regions, however, these 9 areas are no longer being used. The regions now being used are Community Centre Areas.


    1. The areas are defined by municipal codes, last updated in spring of 1996, except for Treaty Status Indians. Postal Code is used for these records instead. See CAUTION below.

    2. It is generally a good idea to apply the region definitions to only those people with Manitoba postal codes.

      Special care is taken when dealing with rural and First Nations municipal codes since we are dealing with small areas. The issues are similar to those found in the Regional Health Authorities (RHAs) in Manitoba.


    Treaty Status Indians' records are assigned using postal codes. This is done because all status First Nations are assigned a municipal code that corresponds to their reserve, which may not be where they actually live.

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  • Roos N, Black C, Wade J, Decker K. How many general surgeons do you need in rural areas? Three approaches to physician resource planning in southern Manitoba. CMAJ 1996;155(4):395-401. [Abstract] (View)
  • Stewart D, Black C, Martens PJ, Peterson S, Friesen D. Assessing the Performance of Rural and Northern Hospitals in Manitoba: A First Look. Winnipeg, MB: Manitoba Centre for Health Policy, 2000. [Report] [Summary] (View)
  • Wall RW. Patterns of ambulatory medical care in rural Manitoba: Determinants of utilization and the effect of physician practice-modality. [Dissertation] The University of Manitoba, 1997.(View)

Contact us

Manitoba Centre for Health Policy
Community Health Sciences, Max Rady College of Medicine,
Rady Faculty of Health Sciences,
Room 408-727 McDermot Ave.
University of Manitoba
Winnipeg, MB R3E 3P5 Canada