Our hospital should end its "tax on the sick"

September 30, 2009 1:47 PM
Stephen Robinson discusses the results of his NHS survey with Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg

Stephen Robinson discusses the results of his NHS survey with Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg

NHS hospitals in Chelmsford collected £1 million in car park charges last year (across Essex £3.5 million and £110m across the country), research by the Liberal Democrats has revealed. Local Lib Dem campaigner Stephen Robinson and other residents raised the subject at last night's Hospital Trust AGM.

The research also revealed that Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge made the most out of any hospital, with £2.8 million in total from parking charges.

Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Candidate for Chelmsford, Stephen Robinson commented:

"I raised the charging issue when I met Broomfield hospital managers last year, again last night and will do so again. The recent changes still leave charges very high.

"This is not the only "tax" on patients that Mid Essex Hospitals must cut. As well as excessive car park charges, there are high bedside phone and TV charges and expensive 0844 phone numbers."

Liberal Democrat Shadow Secretary for Health, Norman Lamb MP, added:

"No one is denying the need for hospitals to cover their costs but that doesn't mean they can use hidden charges to help themselves out of financial black holes. Ministers have ducked this issue for far too long and failed to ensure that Government guidelines are actually being followed."

More about Stephen Robinson's NHS campaign: www.cmld.org.uk/nhs

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