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Increase car parking charges set to be introduced at Craigavon and Daisy Hill hospital

On the same day an announcement on the temporary closure of Armagh’s Minor Injuries Unit the Southern Trust also reveal a consultation into increasing car parking charges at Craigavon and Daisy Hill hospital.

The Trust is proposing to introduce a 20% increase in charges at the two sites and will begin consulting over a two week period commencing on November 3 and ending on November 16.

Yesterday, Southern Health and Social Services Trust chief executive Mairead McAlinden announced that Armagh MIU will see a “temporary closure” from Monday, November 17

It is due to remain closed until March next year but there is a possibility that it may become permanent.

The Trust did however stress that it has not increased car parking charges since 2010 even though the cost of maintenance and consumables associated with the car parking management system have risen considerably.

Anita Carroll, Trust Assistant Director of Functional and Support Service said: “The vast majority (70 – 80%) of the 2,200 car parking spaces on our acute hospital sites at Daisy Hill Hospital and Craigavon Area Hospital will continue to be provided free of charge.

“The Trust has not increased car parking charges since 2010 even though the costs associated with the maintenance and security of hospital car parks (utilities, barrier maintenance / repairs, tickets, CCTV, labour costs etc.) have risen considerably.

“Some of the income is also used to improve car-parking infrastructure on the hospital sites and to provide additional car park spaces for patients, visitors and staff.

“Without this income from car parking charges, funding currently used to pay for the care and treatment of patients would have to be diverted to pay to keep car parks operational.

“The proposed increase will not affect anyone who is eligible for free or concessionary parking (under the DHSSPSNI Policy for Car Parking Provision and Management in the HSC Sector). Our aim is to continue to provide safe, secure and suitably accessible car parking for people using our facilities.”

The Trust is proposing to introduce a 20% increase in respect of each charge band as follows:

Up to 1 hour: £1-1.20

1-2 hours £1.50-£1.80

2-4 hours £2-2.40

4-6 hours £2.50-3.00

6-8 hours £3.50-4.20

8-24 hours £4.50-£5.40

Lost ticket £6

The proposed increase will not affect anyone who is eligible for free or concessionary parking under the DHSSPSNI Policy for Car Parking Provision and Management in HSC Sector.

Those eligible for free parking are Radiotherapy, Chemotherapy and renal dialysis patients along with their next of kin or relative if the are transporting the patient. The same applies for the relative of a critical care or high dependency patient.

The Trust is welcoming your feedback and all enquiries should be directed to: Anita Carroll, Assistant Director of Functional and Support Services at Daisy Hill Hospital. T 028 3083 5056 or email: anita.carroll@sotherntrust.hscni.net

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