Hospital waives car parking charges for 'those who need it most'
- Credit: Archant
West Suffolk Hospital has said it will waive car parking charges for those in "greatest need".
The cost of car parking at NHS hospitals has been a controversial topic in recent years.
Patients have argued that the cost is too high for people who have to visit hospital through no fault of their own.
However, many hospitals have said car parks are a valuable source of income, with the profits ploughed back into healthcare.
West Suffolk Hospital had already given staff free car parking during the coronavirus pandemic.
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It will now extend free parking to blue badge holders, frequent attendees at outpatient units and staff working night shifts at the Bury St Edmunds hospital.
It will also offer free overnight parking for parents of children who are staying at the Hardwick Lane site.
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Executive director of resources Craig Black said: "We’re delighted to be able to offer free parking for the individuals and families who need it the most.
"We see every day how difficult it can be when you have a loved one who is sick, so having one less thing to worry about could really help.
"By continuing free parking for all staff for the duration of the pandemic, this helps us say a small ‘thank you’ to the incredible staff who have worked, and continue to work, tirelessly throughout the most difficult period in the history of the NHS."
The West Suffolk Hospital NHS Foundation Trust said it was implementing the government's commitment to making hospital parking free for groups considered as having the greatest need to access free parking.