Cath Lewin

Clinical Health Planner, BN, AHDC, ADH

Bachelor of Nursing (RMIT), Member Australian Health Design Council

"It takes courage to stop, step back and be strategic while being totally anchored to the needs of those who use our health services. I embrace the charge for ensuring that the safety and wellbeing of all who use our health facilities is reflected in the heart of our designs."


Very few architecture practices have a Clinical Health Facility Planner on staff. Cath’s a major asset. She has nursed in high pressure environments from operating theatres to post-tsunami Aceh. Been a director of nursing and perioperative services manager. Run her own health facility planning consultancy. That combination of clinical, executive and strategic perspective is gold. She’s empathetic and insightful – a bridge between designers, executives, clinicians, patients and families.

Cath speaks everyone’s language. Knows their clinical, operational and political environments inside out. Understands their current systems, demands and challenges. Questions assumptions at all levels in search of operational and spatial efficiencies that make way for better care. She sees where complex care is headed and how to design economically for change.

Cath’s all about teamwork, lateral thinking and grace under pressure. She’s involved in project planning from day one, translating health service plans and models of care and documenting strategic and functional design briefs. By looking at systems as a whole she sees where new technology, equipment or approaches will deliver better outcomes for patients, families and staff.

Cath helps design teams future-proof complex health facilities. She spots precisely where investment today guarantees adaptability tomorrow. She works across most sectors, advocating the person centred health component of projects in seniors living and aged care, education and urban design.

Clients and colleagues love Cath’s multiple perspectives, technical expertise and design nous. They respect her years in the field – including decades of volunteer disaster nursing across the developing world. She puts patients and their families at the centre of every decision she makes, and helps them do the same.