DHA Health Facility Guidelines

It is advisable for users to use live versions of the document on the DHA-HFG website and downloaded versions may be outdated.


This is the home of guidelines for the planning, briefing, design & construction of healthcare facilities. These guidelines place emphasis on achieving outcomes which reflect current healthcare practice in a safe and appropriate environment at a reasonable facility cost. They represent patient focused, research based, modern and efficient planning principles.

Our Mission

Healthcare facilities need to be efficiently planned, appropriately briefed, competently designed and quickly delivered. They need to be sustainable in every respect as an essential public service. Therefore they need to carefully balance the required features and standards against capital and operational costs without compromising the quality of care. Sustainability demands that the precious knowledge of healthcare design be shared rather than wasted after every successful project. These guidelines bring that shared knowledge to the world to achieve these key objectives:

• Establish the minimum acceptable standards
• Maintain public confidence in the facilities which comply with these guidelines
• Provide a basis for the approval and licensing of healthcare facilities
• Provide guidance to designers on the special needs of healthcare facilities
• Consider the wellbeing, safety, privacy and dignity of patients, staff and visitors
• Eliminate design features that result in unacceptable practices
• Allow DHA to require compliance with these guidelines
• Provide a knowledge base to inform future healthcare design consultants

These Guidelines will be continually reviewed, updated and expanded. Readers are encouraged to provide feedback and to contribute material for future updates.


Part A – Administrative Provisions This part outlines the licensing process for healthcare facilities and prequalification process for design consultants

Part B – Health Facility Briefing and Design This part includes Planning & Design guidelines including Functional Planning Units (FPUs) or Departments. Each FPU provides a Description, Models of Care, Functional Relationships and generic Schedules of Accommodation (SOA). Unique room types are defined as Standard Components and provided as Room Data Sheets (RDS) and Room Layout Sheets (RLS).

Part C – Access, Mobility, OH&S This part includes the requirements for Access, Mobility, Occupational Health, Safety and Security.

Part D – Infection Control This part details the Infection Control requirements of healthcare facilities.

Part E – Engineering This part focuses on the acceptable engineering guidelines and standards for Mechanical, Electrical, Plumbing, Fire and other building services.

Part F – Feasibility Planning & Costing Guidelines This part includes feasibility planning, capital costing, financial appraisal and procurement strategy.

Guideline Sections Size
Part A - Administrative Provisions 1.6mb View Index Preview Download
Part B - Health Facility Briefing and Design 39.6mb View Index Preview Download
Part C - Access, Mobility, OH&S 3.2mb View Index Preview Download
Part D - Infection Control 2.3mb View Index Preview Download
Part E - Engineering 6.1mb View Index Preview Download
Part F - Feasibility Planning & Costing 1.1mb View Index Preview Download
Conditions of Use
By entering this site and clicking any of the links therein, you acknowledge the following Conditions of Use: The material offered, or content of this website(s) may not be reproduced for commercial gain or for the purpose of publicity in any form directly or indirectly without written approval by DHA Health Regulation Sector. The material is intended to guide relevant entities seeking to develop or refurbish the design of Healthcare facilities.
These guidelines are intended for reference and use by reasonably skilled and experienced professionals. These guidelines are not exhaustive and do not cover every eventuality that may or may not occur in the design, commissioning, operation or decommissioning of the health facility. They do not reduce the obligation of the designers and other users to comply with all Statutory, Legislative or regulatory requirements or exercise their duty of care. Where there is conflict between these guidelines and existing laws or regulations or Policy on any matter, the laws, regulations or Policy shall take precedence over these guidelines.
DHA and the authors of these guidelines do not accept responsibility for any consequences of the use or abuse of these guidelines. The material on this website may be changed or updated at any time without prior notice. Therefore, users must always refer to the online version.
The material contained in this website is offered free of copyright. Users may freely base their briefing and design work on the material provided subject to the Conditions of Use included on this page. These guidelines may be freely referenced in other guidelines, publications, reports or presentation as long as those documents are also freely offered to the public and provide the appropriate reference to these guidelines.