Campaigns. It is important that I continue to know the strength of feeling on an issue and I prefer to respond to every inquiry, but the sheer size of campaign correspondence means that it is hard to justify to the tax payer the cost and time taken for individual written replies, so regrettably I will no longer reply to every item of campaign correspondence.  I will  post a response to the campaign on the "Responses to campaigns" page of my website.

I am sorry to do this, as it is rather impersonal, but can see no other way of maintaining a good service for all my constituents unless I approach campaigns this way.


31 JAN 2018

Hospital Parking

Thank you for taking the time to email me about hospital parking charges.

I understand your concern on this matter and hope the following information on this topic from the Department of Health is of interest:

Patients and their families should not have to deal with the added stress of unfair parking charges, at what is already an extremely difficult time. That is why the Department of Health has published a clear set of principles to allow the public to hold the NHS to account for unfair charges or practices that are in place.
Decisions regarding hospital car parking are taken locally by NHS Trusts and must take account of local circumstances and community interests. The guidance states that charges should be reasonable for the area and concessions should be available to certain groups such as people with disabilities, carers and visitors to relatives who are gravely ill or have an extended hospital stay.
It is a priority to encourage transparency in the NHS. Each year, the Government publishes information about the costs and provision of car parking at each NHS hospital. The guidance makes clear that NHS organisations should work with patients, staff, visitors, local authorities and public transport providers when planning their parking provisions.
The Department of Health has published overarching principles regarding hospital parking charges, to which all institutions must abide. It is right that such guidelines are available publicly, as they ensure that the Government maintains public trust on contentious issues, such as those surrounding hospital parking charges. These principles can be viewed here:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/nhs-patient-visitor-and-staff-car-parking-principles/nhs-patient-visitor-and-staff-car-parking-principles

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