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NHS car parks making minimum £110m a year in charges

27 February 2009

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The £110m a year minimum the NHS collects in car-parking charges has been defended by health chiefs as being in the best interests of taxpayers.

The full amount will be even higher because 68 trusts declined to provide details to the Department of Health, which released the data in response to parliamentary questions.

They show that patients, families and friends pay more than £83m, staff pay £27m, and that three trusts made more than £2m from visitors alone in 2007/08.

They are Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust (£2,469,978, plus £573,095 from staff), Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust (£2,022,546 plus £1,055,045), and University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust (£2,166,346 plus £758,406).

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Worthing & Southlands Hospitals NHS Trust in Sussex charges the highest average hourly rate for visitors at £3.20. The rate at Yeovil and Southampton is £3.

A Department of Health spokesman said: “We do not think it a sensible use of taxpayers’ money to subsidise free car-parking for anyone who wants to use it.

“Our priority is the speed and quality of healthcare. Waiting times in England are shorter than in Scotland or Wales.”

Copyright © Press Association 2009

Department of Health