Car parking charges for staff vary across the UK with doctors at some NHS trusts forced to pay more than £150 per week to get into work. Analysis by Go Compare has revealed NHS workers could be spending an average of £45 per week on parking their car for four shifts.
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However one NHS trust in London could charge staff a massive £38.40 per 12-hour shift in a massive bill for workers.
Four shifts per week for staff at St Thomas’ Hospital could see drivers forced to pay a whopping £153.60 out of their wages for battling on the coronavirus frontline.
Workers at St George’s Hospital in Tooting and King’s College Hospital in London would need to pay £25 per day to park their car according to the analysis.
The hefty costs would see staff forced to pay more than £100 per week in parking charges in a major blow to finances.
The analysis found NHS staff working in Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge will pay daily charges of over £20.
Staff at the Epsom Hospital and two hospitals in Leeds, St James’s University Hospital and the General Infirmary, will pay in excess of £16 per [DAY?] to park.
Other high spots include the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham and Bristol’s Royal Infirmary.
NHS Trusts set their own parking arrangements using private companies to manage their schemes.
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Staff car parks are usually not available at many hospitals which forces staff to use visitor car parks at full price.
There is no set fee NHS firms must charge which leads to major differences between costs across various hospitals.
The analysis form Go Compare revealed Hull Royal Infirmary has the lowest parking charges across the UK with staff forced to pay just £5 per day.
This is a massive £33 daily difference compared to the most expensive hospitals in London which equates to a £122 saving over four shifts per week.
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St Helens Hospital and Whiston Hospital in Merseyside are also considered one of the cheapest with costs set at just £6 per day.
Parking charges are also low at the Broomfield Hospital in Chelmsford and the Northern General Hospital in Sheffield.
Health minister Edward Arger said last week that the free parking support for NHS staff “cannot continue indefinitely”.
No date has been set to end the scheme but the government was looking at how much longer the scheme needed to continue.
He said: “The provision of free parking for National Health Service staff by NHS Trusts has not ended and nothing has changed since the announcement on March 25.
“However, free parking for staff has only been made possible by support from local authorities and independent providers and this support cannot continue indefinitely.”
The free parking rules were introduced at the end of March after several campaigns to scrap the charges for those on the frontline in the battle against the virus.
A Change.org petition calling for the charges to be scrapped received thousands of signatures at the time.
The health minister confirmed free parking would continue to be offered for the disabled, frequent outpatient visitors, parents of sick children and night shift workers.
This policy was already set to be introduced after Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced the changes in December last year.
Mr Argar revealed the implementation of this new scheme had been “on hold” due to the pandemic.
He said: “Implementation of this commitment has been on hold whilst the NHS has been managing the COVID-19 pandemic and devoting its hospital parking capacity to staff and other facilities necessary for managing the pandemic.”
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