Island Health aims to boost responses to B.C. SPEAK Survey

B.C.’s largest population health survey, the SPEAK survey, has been extended and will remain open until July 31 to help boost participation.

People living in the Island Health region can have a say in shaping the health programs and services in their region by participating in the Survey on Population Experiences, Action, and Knowledge (SPEAK) and sharing their experiences over the past few years. 

“I’m grateful to everyone who has participated in this latest round of the SPEAK survey – your input is vital to help us understand the health needs of Island Health’s populations and regions,” says Dr. Réka Gustafson, Island Health’s vice president of population health and chief medical health officer. “For those who have yet to take the survey, I encourage you to contribute to this important conversation about the health of our diverse communities. We want to hear from you!” 

Together with the BC Centre for Disease Control and health authorities across the province, we launched the third round of SPEAK on April 25. To date, about 85,000 people have responded and we are hoping to hear from 120,000 people of all backgrounds and from all over the province, particularly from under-represented groups, where participation levels are lower, such as:

  • First Nations, Métis and Inuit people;
  • People from racialized communities; including those of Chinese, South and Southeast Asian, Black, Filipino, Latin American, Arab and more.
  • People living in rural parts of the province;
  • Men aged 18 to 34;
  • People aged 75 and older;
  • People with no post-secondary education;
  • People with lower household incomes; and
  • People with children and young adults in their lives.

The survey asks how people living in B.C. are doing when it comes to their social, economic, physical health, mental health, and overall well-being, so we can better support communities across the province. 

These type of population health assessments help inform public health interventions, practices and policies. Previous survey findings have informed policy and programming priorities, including the reopening plans and safe return to school for kindergarten to grade 12, vaccine interventions in areas with low uptake, and initiatives to improve mental wellness in children and youth. 

The survey takes around 20 minutes to fill out and can be accessed at Members of the public are also encouraged to share the survey with their family and loved ones and help them participate as needed.

If you need any assistance with the survey, please reach out to Island Health’s Population Health Assessment, Surveillance and Epidemiology team at

SPEAK is available in 10 different languages and people’s responses will inform future public health initiatives across the province. By responding to the survey people living in B.C. will let their health authority know what resources are needed to improve health and well-being in their community.

The SPEAK survey is funded by the BCCDC Foundation for Public Health. 


British Columbians 18 years of age and older are encouraged to participate in the latest round of the SPEAK survey. We would be grateful to hear from people across the entire Island Health region, including those in the following communities:

North Island region
  • West Vancouver Island 
  • Port Hardy / Port Alice 
  • Port McNeill / Sointula
  • North Vancouver Island 
Central Island region
  • West Cowichan Valley 
  • Ladysmith 
  • Penelakut and Thetis Island
  • West Nanaimo 
  • Cedar / Wellington 
  • Alberni Valley / Bamfield
  • West Coast 
South Island region
  • Metchosin
  • Juan de Fuca 

In addition to the under-represented groups highlighted, we also encourage those from the following groups across the Island Health region to participate:

  • Women aged 18-34 
  • People with education below high school