Hospitals’ car parking revenue tops £3.5m

Andrew Smith at Oxford’s John Radcliffe Hospital

Andrew Smith at Oxford’s John Radcliffe Hospital

First published in News Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by , Health reporter, also covering Kidlington. Call me on 01865 425271

ABOUT £3.5m was paid by patients and staff for parking at hospitals across Oxfordshire last year.

New figures reveal that charges at hospitals like Oxford’s John Radcliffe and the Churchill brought in 20 per cent more in 2013/14 than the previous year for Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust (OUHT).

The patient, visitor and staff income – which came after a hike in charges – was up from £2.9m in 2012/13 and £3.1m in 2011/12.

But after costs, the trust recorded a £690,000 surplus to re-invest into services, down from £918,000 in 2011/12 and £897,000 in 2012/13.

Trust spokeswoman Susan Brown said its surplus fell because of a rise in costs such as maintenance of surfaces and machines and staff pay.

She said: “Charges are levied in order to cover the trust’s costs in maintaining its car parks and also in order to manage the car parks.

“If there were no charges/management at all, the parking facilities would be inundated as there would be nothing to stop staff and the general public parking in all the public car parks and people using our car parks as a park-and-ride service to the city centre.

“It enables the trust to protect hospital car parks for patient and visitor use.”

She said the surplus went back into the trust but could not reveal any specific things it has paid for.

Charges went up last June for the first time since 2006 with parking for three to four hours rising by 87 per cent from £3 to £5.60.

Limited free disabled parking is available and regular attendees at radiotherapy, chemotherapy, renal dialysis, dermatology and transplant can get free parking. Discretionary permits are also available.

Staff who are entitled to an annual parking permit are charged up to £345 per annum depending on salary (the higher the salary, the higher the cost of the permit).

Entitlement depends on a number of criteria, including where staff live.

Staff who are not entitled to an annual parking permit can buy up to five one-day passes per month. Each one-day pass costs £2.30.

Revenue generated by parking goes back into the Trust’s general budget.

Mrs Brown said: “No further increases are planned at this time.”

She said council planning restrictions mean the car parks cannot expand any more. Parking at sites – also including the Nuffield Orthopaedic Centre (NOC) and Banbury’s Horton General – is free from 8pm to 8am TaxPayers’ Alliance chief executive Jonathan Isaby said: “Taxpayers have already paid for the hospital and the car park, so hospital parking fees should be abolished.

“If they insist on charging, the price of visiting relatives or popping in for a check-up shouldn’t go up because the Trust has allowed costs to spiral.”

Dermot Roaf, vice chairman of Healthwatch Oxfordshire, the official county NHS watchdog, said: “One has to remember that the reason for the charges is not to make money but to stop people parking.”

He said: “If you don’t charge enough you have total chaos.”

The JR has 1,624 staff spaces and 743 for the public; the Churchill has 627 for staff and 410 for the public; the Horton has 338 for staff and 239 for the public and the NOC has 280 for staff and 205 for the public.

Oxford East Labour MP Andrew Smith said: “I think most people regard them as an unwelcome but unavoidable fact of life.

“They know the hospitals are strapped for cash, and that parking elsewhere in Oxford is expensive too.”

Oxford West and Abingdon MP Nicola Blackwood failed to respond to requests for a comment.

 

PARKING FEES

  • Up to 30 minutes: free (if vehicle exits within this period)
  • 30 minutes to 1 hour: £1.40
  • 1-2 hours: £2.80
  • 2-3 hours: £4.20
  • 3-4 hours: £5.60
  • More than 4 hours: £7
  • 8pm-8am: Free

 

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Comments (23)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

10:55am Sat 12 Jul 14

Oxonian says...

These hospital profiteers are as bad as the local councils which over-charge people for Park & Ride and make large profits. Sick people and their relatives and friends have to pay extortionate amounts when visiting the hospitals - and these are often people without much spare cash, at the most distressing time of their lives.

A spokeswoman said: "The surplus went back into the trust but could not reveal any specific things it has paid for". There's a surprise!
These hospital profiteers are as bad as the local councils which over-charge people for Park & Ride and make large profits. Sick people and their relatives and friends have to pay extortionate amounts when visiting the hospitals - and these are often people without much spare cash, at the most distressing time of their lives. A spokeswoman said: "The surplus went back into the trust but could not reveal any specific things it has paid for". There's a surprise! Oxonian
  • Score: 0

7:49pm Sat 12 Jul 14

Dr Martin says...

alternativley they could use public transport
alternativley they could use public transport Dr Martin
  • Score: 2

8:08pm Sat 12 Jul 14

Oxonian says...

Dr Martin wrote:
alternativley they could use public transport
Get real. Many people have to attend hospital because they are too ill or disabled to use public transport. And not everyone is within reach of a suitable bus service to take them to hospital, especially if their appointment is early in the morning.
[quote][p][bold]Dr Martin[/bold] wrote: alternativley they could use public transport[/p][/quote]Get real. Many people have to attend hospital because they are too ill or disabled to use public transport. And not everyone is within reach of a suitable bus service to take them to hospital, especially if their appointment is early in the morning. Oxonian
  • Score: -1

1:12pm Sun 13 Jul 14

Dr Martin says...

If they are too ill or disabled I would be concerned that they are driving to hospital, perhaps use a taxi?
If they are too ill or disabled I would be concerned that they are driving to hospital, perhaps use a taxi? Dr Martin
  • Score: 1

4:36pm Sun 13 Jul 14

Oxonian says...

Dr Martin wrote:
If they are too ill or disabled I would be concerned that they are driving to hospital, perhaps use a taxi?
Who said they were driving themselves to hospital? Many disabled people are driven there by relatives or friends.
[quote][p][bold]Dr Martin[/bold] wrote: If they are too ill or disabled I would be concerned that they are driving to hospital, perhaps use a taxi?[/p][/quote]Who said they were driving themselves to hospital? Many disabled people are driven there by relatives or friends. Oxonian
  • Score: -1

5:14pm Sun 13 Jul 14

mytaxes says...

Oxford East Labour MP Andrew Smith said: “I think most people regard them as an unwelcome but unavoidable fact of life.

“They know the hospitals are strapped for cash, and that parking elsewhere in Oxford is expensive too.”

It's your Labour councillors that make it expensive to park in Oxford.
Oxford East Labour MP Andrew Smith said: “I think most people regard them as an unwelcome but unavoidable fact of life. “They know the hospitals are strapped for cash, and that parking elsewhere in Oxford is expensive too.” It's your Labour councillors that make it expensive to park in Oxford. mytaxes
  • Score: -1

5:36pm Sun 13 Jul 14

Dr Martin says...

Oxonian wrote:
Dr Martin wrote:
If they are too ill or disabled I would be concerned that they are driving to hospital, perhaps use a taxi?
Who said they were driving themselves to hospital? Many disabled people are driven there by relatives or friends.
Then if they have to bring their own cars and feel the need to stay a while then why moan about a relatively small payment to pay for parking?

We should be grateful that the treatment we get is free at the moment.......
[quote][p][bold]Oxonian[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Dr Martin[/bold] wrote: If they are too ill or disabled I would be concerned that they are driving to hospital, perhaps use a taxi?[/p][/quote]Who said they were driving themselves to hospital? Many disabled people are driven there by relatives or friends.[/p][/quote]Then if they have to bring their own cars and feel the need to stay a while then why moan about a relatively small payment to pay for parking? We should be grateful that the treatment we get is free at the moment....... Dr Martin
  • Score: 2

6:26pm Sun 13 Jul 14

Oxonian says...

Dr Martin wrote:
Oxonian wrote:
Dr Martin wrote:
If they are too ill or disabled I would be concerned that they are driving to hospital, perhaps use a taxi?
Who said they were driving themselves to hospital? Many disabled people are driven there by relatives or friends.
Then if they have to bring their own cars and feel the need to stay a while then why moan about a relatively small payment to pay for parking?

We should be grateful that the treatment we get is free at the moment.......
Dr Martin seems to have no idea of the reality of life for many patients. They may have to visit a hospital every day or every week for a long period. And the parking fees are not small, especially if you have to wait at hospital for a long time, when the fees mount up. I recently had to attend for four blood transfusions, which each took several hours.
[quote][p][bold]Dr Martin[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Oxonian[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Dr Martin[/bold] wrote: If they are too ill or disabled I would be concerned that they are driving to hospital, perhaps use a taxi?[/p][/quote]Who said they were driving themselves to hospital? Many disabled people are driven there by relatives or friends.[/p][/quote]Then if they have to bring their own cars and feel the need to stay a while then why moan about a relatively small payment to pay for parking? We should be grateful that the treatment we get is free at the moment.......[/p][/quote]Dr Martin seems to have no idea of the reality of life for many patients. They may have to visit a hospital every day or every week for a long period. And the parking fees are not small, especially if you have to wait at hospital for a long time, when the fees mount up. I recently had to attend for four blood transfusions, which each took several hours. Oxonian
  • Score: 0

6:32pm Sun 13 Jul 14

Dr Martin says...

I would have used public transport if the parking fees were too much for you
I would have used public transport if the parking fees were too much for you Dr Martin
  • Score: 1

6:38pm Sun 13 Jul 14

Dr Martin says...

Let's have another go

You should use public transport if the parking fee's were too much for you
Let's have another go You should use public transport if the parking fee's were too much for you Dr Martin
  • Score: 1

6:54pm Sun 13 Jul 14

Dr Martin says...

down voting me is fultile
down voting me is fultile Dr Martin
  • Score: 1

7:01pm Sun 13 Jul 14

Dr Martin says...

futile even
futile even Dr Martin
  • Score: 1

7:57pm Sun 13 Jul 14

Oxonian says...

Dr Martin wrote:
Let's have another go

You should use public transport if the parking fee's were too much for you
I've already said that public transport is not always available or suitable for hospital patients. So why do you keep suggesting it?
[quote][p][bold]Dr Martin[/bold] wrote: Let's have another go You should use public transport if the parking fee's were too much for you[/p][/quote]I've already said that public transport is not always available or suitable for hospital patients. So why do you keep suggesting it? Oxonian
  • Score: -1

8:24pm Sun 13 Jul 14

Dr Martin says...

Well if isn't always suitable how about getting a Taxi

At the end of the day if someone can afford to run a car they can afford the parking charges
Well if isn't always suitable how about getting a Taxi At the end of the day if someone can afford to run a car they can afford the parking charges Dr Martin
  • Score: 1

11:40pm Sun 13 Jul 14

Oxonian says...

Dr Martin wrote:
Well if isn't always suitable how about getting a Taxi

At the end of the day if someone can afford to run a car they can afford the parking charges
So you want patients to pay for a taxi from, say, Burford or Bloxham? That would be costly, especially for patients who have to attend hospital several times a week.

It's a pity that you have so little sympathy for people who are suffering illnesses.
[quote][p][bold]Dr Martin[/bold] wrote: Well if isn't always suitable how about getting a Taxi At the end of the day if someone can afford to run a car they can afford the parking charges[/p][/quote]So you want patients to pay for a taxi from, say, Burford or Bloxham? That would be costly, especially for patients who have to attend hospital several times a week. It's a pity that you have so little sympathy for people who are suffering illnesses. Oxonian
  • Score: 0

11:52pm Sun 13 Jul 14

bicesterlady says...

Last year I took my 6 year old to a hospital appointment. We were there for 6 hours - having expected to be 2.

I understand Drs have emergencies to attend to, but it seemed rather unfair that as a result I had to stump up £7 to get my car out.

I can see the need for there to be charges but I do feel the current tariff is excessive.
Last year I took my 6 year old to a hospital appointment. We were there for 6 hours - having expected to be 2. I understand Drs have emergencies to attend to, but it seemed rather unfair that as a result I had to stump up £7 to get my car out. I can see the need for there to be charges but I do feel the current tariff is excessive. bicesterlady
  • Score: 1

5:02am Mon 14 Jul 14

the wizard says...

I thought the car parks were there to enable people to attend appointments and visit in patients. At no point should they be used for profit.
I thought the car parks were there to enable people to attend appointments and visit in patients. At no point should they be used for profit. the wizard
  • Score: 2

6:31am Mon 14 Jul 14

Dr Martin says...

Oxonian wrote:
Dr Martin wrote:
Well if isn't always suitable how about getting a Taxi

At the end of the day if someone can afford to run a car they can afford the parking charges
So you want patients to pay for a taxi from, say, Burford or Bloxham? That would be costly, especially for patients who have to attend hospital several times a week.

It's a pity that you have so little sympathy for people who are suffering illnesses.
The hospital(s) might be able to some form of reduced parking charges for those who use the car park on a regular basis, I know some hospitals do
I have suggested alternative means of you coming to hospital and avoid having to pay to park, you seem to have rejected them all for various reasons
so I guess you are going to have to pay up like the rest of us
[quote][p][bold]Oxonian[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Dr Martin[/bold] wrote: Well if isn't always suitable how about getting a Taxi At the end of the day if someone can afford to run a car they can afford the parking charges[/p][/quote]So you want patients to pay for a taxi from, say, Burford or Bloxham? That would be costly, especially for patients who have to attend hospital several times a week. It's a pity that you have so little sympathy for people who are suffering illnesses.[/p][/quote]The hospital(s) might be able to some form of reduced parking charges for those who use the car park on a regular basis, I know some hospitals do I have suggested alternative means of you coming to hospital and avoid having to pay to park, you seem to have rejected them all for various reasons so I guess you are going to have to pay up like the rest of us Dr Martin
  • Score: 0

7:20am Mon 14 Jul 14

HomerSimpsonDoh says...

Let's hope Dr Martin suffers from a very bad illness and has to attend hospital everyday.
Let's hope Dr Martin suffers from a very bad illness and has to attend hospital everyday. HomerSimpsonDoh
  • Score: -12

7:37am Mon 14 Jul 14

Dr Martin says...

HomerSimpsonDoh wrote:
Let's hope Dr Martin suffers from a very bad illness and has to attend hospital everyday.
Doh!
I wouldn't bother driving in if I am that ill
[quote][p][bold]HomerSimpsonDoh[/bold] wrote: Let's hope Dr Martin suffers from a very bad illness and has to attend hospital everyday.[/p][/quote]Doh! I wouldn't bother driving in if I am that ill Dr Martin
  • Score: 0

5:25pm Mon 14 Jul 14

Dr Martin says...

HomerSimpsonDoh wrote:
Let's hope Dr Martin suffers from a very bad illness and has to attend hospital everyday.
Not nice to say you wish a "very bad illness" on me for basically for a few pounds, I shall not forget that comment
[quote][p][bold]HomerSimpsonDoh[/bold] wrote: Let's hope Dr Martin suffers from a very bad illness and has to attend hospital everyday.[/p][/quote]Not nice to say you wish a "very bad illness" on me for basically for a few pounds, I shall not forget that comment Dr Martin
  • Score: 1

8:50am Thu 17 Jul 14

Dr Martin says...

futile
futile Dr Martin
  • Score: 0

9:52am Thu 17 Jul 14

Dr Martin says...

:-)
:-) Dr Martin
  • Score: 0

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