Local Fianna Fáil TD, John Curran has said that the delay in publishing the report and findings of a Government led review into the car parking charges in hospital nationwide means the problem is being let continue for vulnerable patients who require long-term care.
The Dublin Mid-West Deputy has previously urged both the Minister for Health and the HSE to establish national guidelines to regulate car parking fees in hospitals across the country, particularly hospitals based in the Capital.
Deputy Curran received confirmation this week from the Minister that the report is yet to be finalised despite a commitment to publish the findings of the review in August. This report is now 8 weeks overdue.
He said, “This is an issue I have been consistently highlighting for some time now and I was initially pleased when a decision was taken by Government to carry out a review of hospital car parking charges across the country.
“The Irish Cancer Society previously revealed that some cancer patients could be paying up to €63 a week in car parking charges. Not only are these patients likely to be facing a time of complex need and financial stress due to their diagnosis, they are expected to foot pricey car parking fee to attend treatment.
“This review should have been carried out without delay and then ultimately led to clear national guidelines being put in place on car parking fees in hospitals such as Tallaght and St James’s.
“Reducing the pricing policy for cancer patients would no doubt help alleviate some of the stress with managing a long-term and serious illness. This is not a case of lifting these charges for no good reason; this is about adopting a more compassionate and fairer approach for hospital patients in long-term treatment.
“This Government need to be put under pressure to publish this report and get these necessary changes in place urgently,” concluded Curran.