When screening the region's construction projects the Government's expert panel employed a number of dimensioning criteria in order to financially adjust the projects. The panel has taken a more restrictive approach than the regions to dimensioning and conditions for the utilisation of capacity and space.
Based on a general argument of applying a principle of caution to dimensioning and a focus on flexible building design, the expert panel has made cutbacks in relation to the dimensioning foundation specified by the regions.
The expert panel's criteria for dimensioning the new hospitals
The Kvalitetsfonden construction projects are subject to the following framework conditions and dimensioning criteria defined by the Government's expert panel.
The regions must adjust the dimensioning of the construction projects based on an expected 50 per cent increase in the number of outpatient treatments and an expected 20 per cent reduction in beds between 2007 and 2020.
An occupancy rate of 85 per cent is assumed for hospitals/wards with a large proportion of acute patients. The panel assumes better bed utilisation in projects involving a large proportion of elective patients.
The expert panel assumes a capacity utilisation for the treatment areas of around 7 hours a day, 245 days a year.
The regions should adjust the dimensioning based on an average standard area of 33-35 m2 for single occupancy rooms.
The regions should base the construction of new somatic buildings on a gross/net factor of 2.0. For psychiatry, which has significantly less need for equipment etc., an overall level of 1.8 should be adequate.
The expert panel has decided that new construction projects should have a maximum price level of DKK 29,000/m2, including DKK 5,800/m2 for equipment, IT and furnishings. This corresponds to 25 per cent of the construction cost of DKK 23,200/m² justifiable for university hospital buildings being constructed on a vacant site or under similar conditions.
For other new construction and auxiliary buildings, a maximum level of DKK 27,000/m², including 4,500/m² for equipment, IT and furnishings (corresponding to 20 per cent of the construction cost of 22,500/m²) is deemed to be adequate. For psychiatry, a price level of up to DKK 22,000/m² (total price incl. equipment, etc.) may be justified.
Costs of renovation will vary depending on the specific mix of construction and renovation, and the costs have therefore simply been reduced by 20 per cent.
IT and equipment
For new construction on a vacant site, the expert panel has decided that 25 per cent of the construction cost/total budget is a good basis.
The expert panel has assumed the cost of equipment will be lower in the case of extensions to existing hospitals, where one can expect a higher degree of gradual operational transition and where the hospital typically already performs a number or the majority of the functions and special services the new structure is expected to provide. A base rate of 20 per cent of the new construction cost has therefore been used for such extension projects.
For psychiatry, a level of approximately 3 per cent is considered appropriate, for both renovation and new construction.
The expert panel's dimensioning criteria reflect the applicable legislation and price level at the time the investment process was initiated. This means that construction must be based over a period of the next 10-15 years on a static framework reflecting the legislative and economic conditions that applied in 2008, under restrictions preventing reductions in the number of square metres, etc.
The criteria and restrictions that provide the framework for the Kvalitetsfonden construction projects therefore represent some challenges. The total budget, fixed number of square metres and static square metre prices assumed leave no room to accommodate any changes to legislation that have the effect of increasing the costs of construction.
However, the Government and Danish Regions have begun discussing options for making loans available for energy investments which go beyond low-energy class 2015 of the Danish building regulations.