A new report shows hospitals in Britain make hundreds of millions of pounds each year only by charging medical staff and visitors for parking their cars in their facilities.
The Press Association published results of a study on Thursday that showed more than 40 percent of hospitals run by the National Health Service (NHS), UK’s flagship medical organization, increased charges for car parking in the past year.
The report said medical staff and visitors to hospitals paid a whopping sum of £226 million, including penalty fines, for parking their cars at facilities owned by NHS trusts in 2017-18.
The research showed that more than half of the trusts responding to PA requests for clarification had doubled the prices for car parking over the past months.
Car parking charges at hospitals has become a thorny political issue for the current Conservative-led government.
Opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn has repeatedly criticized the government for seeking to raise money for its deteriorating health services from visitors and staffs who are somehow related to the patients and their miseries.
“It’s wrong to charge people to visit loved ones in hospital and the staff who care for them,” read a statement in May last year from Corbyn who has vowed to scrap the hospital car parking charges altogether.
The NHS has faced increasing criticism for its delayed services for the patients across Britain. The organization, a source of pride for British government over the past decades, has blamed government cuts to its budget for the reduced quality of services.
Estimates suggest the NHS has failed to fill more than 100,000 vacancies in the organization especially at a time when many foreign doctors and nurses leave Britain in anticipation of the country’s planned departure from the EU in March.