On foot of car parking and clamping receipts received from the HSE ,Aontú representative for Slane Peter Whelan, has highlighted the need for Aontús new hospital car parking charges bill .
He told Meath Live, ‘Hospital car parking charges has netted over €100m since 2012 . In our lady’s hospital Navan , they took in 1,590,164 euro .
‘The receipts for 2020 would have been higher , were it not for the covid 19 pandemic, and the suspension of non covid healthcare service’s. On a human level , what percentage of those charges were from cancer patients and others with serious long term illness.
‘The government should be doing more to alleviate unnecessary burdens such as car parking charges for patients, some of whom are fighting for their very lives. The very last thing on their mind should be can I afford car parking charges while receiving treatment?
‘Our Aontú bill provides for an entitlement to free parking for up to three hours in the car park of a public hospital , where an occupant of the vehicle (either the driver or passenger) is attending the hospital to receive out patient services.
‘We urge all TDs of other parties and none to support this bill , and to help move the bill through the Dail as fast as is possible. Before the last general election , Fianna Fáil , Fine Gael , Sinn Fein , and Labour all promised either to cap hospital car parking charges or provide free parking for patients , yet it still has not happened.
‘Patients cannot wait on this government to get its act together and finally resolve this important issue. The Irish cancer society has also campaigned for a cut in hospital car parking charges. Paying car parking charges when you are an out patient or attending emergency services in your local hospital is an additional and unnecessary stress and pressure for many people to deal with’