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Patient hits out after hospital car park warning
1:30pm Monday 20th August 2012 in Local
A DISABLED patient has complained of discrimination after she was given a hospital parking warning for dropping off her sick dad.
Donella Crisdon, aged 44, had been dropping off her dad for a blood transfusion at Worcestershire Royal Hospital in Worcester when she received the note warning her that next time she would be fined.
Miss Crisdon had parked in a disabled bay outside of the car park barriers where motorists must pay a minimum of £3 for two-hours parking.
There are only three disabled bays inside the barrier where motorists can stop for 30 minutes without paying.
Miss Crisdon, who had only been at the hospital 10 minutes on May 8, said the situation was unfair.
The drop-off point in front of the hospital is often occupied by taxis and hospital transport vehicles making it hard to find a space, she said.
Miss Crisdon, who has multiple sclerosis, said disabled people now faced “double discrimination” after the decision to charge disabled motorists the same as everyone else.
The parking situation at the hospital is being reviewed, prompted by concerns expressed by the patient group LINk (the local involvement network).
Miss Crisdon, of Abberley Drive, Droitwich, who gets her money from disability living allowance and from being a carer for her dad, said: “I have an income of £600 per week.
“I feel disabled people are being persecuted and penalised all ways as we have to attend hospital more, are on low incomes and now have to park close even if we are only dropping off.”
Deputy chief executive Chris Tidman wrote to Miss Crisdon, saying: “The trust does recognise that car parking is an issue, and in particular that the main entrance area becomes congested.
“As for charging for disabled car parking, this was a decision made by the trust board during this period of financial pressure which both the trust and the wider NHS finds itself in. It was felt that to do otherwise would be discriminatory.”
A spokesman later added that work was under way to create an additional 111-space car park at the hospital.
Plans also include increasing the number of drop-off points for visitors.