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Green Guide for Health Care™

A best practices guide for healthy and sustainable building design, construction, and operations for the healthcare industry developed by Health Care Without Harm.

The Green Guide for Health Care™ is the healthcare sector's first quantifiable sustainable design toolkit integrating enhanced environmental and health principles and practices into the planning design construction operations and maintenance of their facilities. This Guide provides the healthcare sector with a voluntary self-certifying metric toolkit of best practices that designers owners and operators can use to guide and evaluate their progress towards high performance healing environments.

Healthcare facilities present both a challenge and opportunity in the development and implementation of sustainable design construction and operations practices. Issues such as 24/7 operations energy and water use intensity chemical use infection control requirements and formidable regulatory requirements can pose significant obstacles to the implementation of currently accepted sustainability protocols. Furthermore it is appropriate that guidelines customized for the healthcare sector reflect the fundamental organizational mission to protect and enhance individual and community health and acknowledge the intrinsic relationship between the built environment and ecological health. As the healthcare sector develops a design language for high performance healing environments it has the opportunity to highlight the associated health-based benefits. This in turn can inspire the broader adoption of health based design principles in other building sectors.

This document is neither intended to establish regulatory requirements nor to be viewed as a minimum standard for design construction or operations. Rather it is designed to serve as a voluntary educational guide for early adopters of sustainable design construction and operations practices to encourage continuous improvement in the healthcare sector and to provide market signals to catalyze a richer palette of options for those who follow the early adopters. As the general level of green building practice rises it is anticipated that the Guide will be updated to encourage continued leadership and higher levels of rigor associated with creating high performance healing environments.

Updates and Information

This is an evolving document that will be updated as we learn from the Pilot program. If you did not download this document from the GGHC website it is important that you register at to ensure that you will be notified of updates as this document progresses. Download the Green Guide for Health Care™

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