Patients and visitors across Dorset shelled out £1,841,345 in hospital car parking fees last year (2021/22), new NHS figures have revealed.
Mid Dorset & North Poole's Liberal Democrats called the fees a “tax on the sick” and urged the Government to take action to scrap car parking fees for patients and visitors during the cost of living emergency.
This would be paid for by the government instead of coming out of overstretched hospital budgets.
Commenting, Vikki Slade the Lib Dem Parliamentary Candidate for Mid Dorset & North Poole said:
“As our hospitals are pushed to breaking point it is local people who are paying the price.
“This is a tax on the sick and a tax on caring across Dorset. People in Dorset now not only have to worry about terrible waiting times and understaffed hospitals, but also whether they can even afford to visit loved ones.
“The government should immediately provide the funding needed to scrap parking charges for patients and relatives.
“It is completely wrong that local residents have to shell out thousands of pounds to see their ill loved ones during this cost of living emergency.”