Author Topic: Parking Great Western Hospital  (Read 14546 times)

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Offline Janda

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Parking Great Western Hospital
« on: September 25, 2007, 10:24:45 PM »
Hello
This is my first post to Talk Swindon (please be gentle with me.....)

I am very angry that people have to pay to park at The Great Western Hospital.
No body goes to the hospital for a jolly.  There are three basic reasons to be parking there, you are attending an appointment, visiting a patient or a member of staff.  With the exception of the last category you cannot be sure how long you need to pay for.  It would be an improvement to a very bad set up if you got a ticket as you went in and paid for the time you spent in the car park on leaving.  The stress and pain of rushing to visit a dying relative and not having the correct coins available or a clue as to how long your loved one may need you with them is unbelievable.  The hospital should not benefit from such pain.

Janda     



Offline Simon

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Re: Parking Great Western Hospital
« Reply #1 on: September 25, 2007, 11:50:13 PM »
Hello
This is my first post to Talk Swindon (please be gentle with me.....)

Welcome to TalkSwindon Janda, and thanks for posting. I promise I'll be gentle  :)

Regardless of my somewhat outspoken views on public transport and private car ownership / usage, I can't help but agree with this statement about getting a ticket when you arrive and then paying for the time you've parked when you eventually leave. I've seen car parks working on this model enough times, so surely GWH can manage it as well.

It would be an improvement to a very bad set up if you got a ticket as you went in and paid for the time you spent in the car park on leaving.  The stress and pain of rushing to visit a dying relative and not having the correct coins available or a clue as to how long your loved one may need you with them is unbelievable.  The hospital should not benefit from such pain.

I don't own a car, and I'm fortunate enough to have never had to visit GWH, so maybe people with more experience of this than me would like to comment...

 :popcorn:
We are all in this together, but some of us are more in it than others (with apologies to George Orwell)

Offline Lynda

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Re: Parking Great Western Hospital
« Reply #2 on: September 26, 2007, 05:56:55 AM »
Hi Jandra.

Yes The parking situation seems stupid to me.
I've seen people in near-tears as they try to find the punitive fees before going into hospital for... certanly not a jolly.

As well as high fees there is actually a shortage of space.
 I heard that even staff who are called in have got tickets for parking outside of bays ( why is there not enough space...?). What a nonsense - doctors who respond to a call-out get a parking fine beacause there is no space for them to park.

Lynda  NO2ID 07802 151464  Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.

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Re: Parking Great Western Hospital
« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2007, 09:32:55 AM »
Hi Jandra and welcome,

I fully sympathise with you feelings as I have spent all too much time up there recently both on my own account and in visiting family.  For my part I don't and will not pay their car parking charges cos I park away and walk - won't tell you where or next time there will be no room for me but it is a liberty to take advantage of visitors in this way.  But I guess they have to pay the mortgage somehow!!  after all we have it because of lend lease or whatever spread over twenty five years.

Now this should be another thread - has anyone noticed how dirty the stairwell is with ingrained dirt in the corners?  and they wonder why they had to shut two wards in a new hospital with MSRA?  Perhaps they should use the car park fees to get a decent contractor!!  Now we would find that more acceptable I suggest.  :idiot2:

Offline DaveWood

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Re: Parking Great Western Hospital
« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2007, 01:30:23 PM »
The system does seem to beggar belief.

A lot of people seem to be taking that route of parking in nearby residential areas.

I was working with a group of residents in formerly sleepy Coate who sometimes cannot even park outside their own homes because of people parked there trying to skip the hospital parking fees.

The only group of residents in years who actually wants to opt into a new Residents Parking scheme!

Offline James

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Re: Parking Great Western Hospital
« Reply #5 on: September 26, 2007, 01:54:09 PM »
I think the system is dreadful and piles on stress when you really shouldn't.

Changing the system to pay on exit is an excellent idea, and takes away the stress on arrival, when you may already be under a lot of emotional (and/or physical) pressure to get into the building.

I would prefer not to have to pay at all, though I guess it is a good money spinner.

Does the hospital get all of the money - fees & fines?

My second question is how much it would cost to change to pay on exit? Clearly a substantially better solution than pay on entry.

Anyone from the Transport bunch about to check..?

James.

Offline Geoff Reid

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Re: Parking Great Western Hospital
« Reply #6 on: September 26, 2007, 05:19:52 PM »
Hi Janda  :)

I had a meeting with a consultant at the GWH last week, stupidly I only allowed myself 30 mins for the 5 mile journey.

I was there in 10 minutes, then spent 20 minutes in the procession of cars merry-go-rounding the car park looking for spaces, another 5 queuing at the ticket machine and 10 more in the queue at an empty reception desk....only to find the consultant was running 40 minutes behind anyway  ;D

God bless the NHS and all who sail in her...and I really mean that. I'd have been dead several times over if it wasn't for the NHS :angel: (pipe down Snelgrove, you'll be waiting a long while yet to read my obit.....) so I find it difficult to have a really good gripe without feeling pretty bad about doing it, but I will say this:

Hospital car parks appear to universally crap, never laid out well, big enough, pedestrian friendly or free....and I've seen a few. 

I don't mind paying to park, provided I haven't had to mess about for ages to do so.  Small irritations become bloody great big ones when you're ill or worried about someone that is, and the very last straw can often be 'achieved' by parking, or attempting to park at the hospital.

Compared to Frenchay hospital in Bristol, GWR is pretty good  :-X


Offline Alex

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Re: Parking Great Western Hospital
« Reply #7 on: September 26, 2007, 05:44:44 PM »
Hi Janda, I agree entirely- its absolute cruelty to stress and overcharge people at really difficult times in their lives.

We had to pay about £150 per month to visit my father in law in the GWH last year where he lanquished in a dirty ward and acquired C diff- so he was there for months and months. We dread him ever having to return.

My own Dad died in the JR11 in Oxford, the year before- and the parking charges were the same- and again- not enough spaces so we'd have to try to get there before other people did just to get a space and we ( of course ungrudgingly) paid a huge amount just so we coudl get to see him.

In retrospect we found out that at the GWH if you are a regular visitor , at the discretion of certain ward staff you can get a parking permit for a smaller charge. However you have to find a member of staff who is au-fait with the rules adn able to comply and is willing to spend the time which would probably take hours longer.

The medical staff don't get any reprieve either- its all down to the managers' decisions- as to who manages the parking facilites and it clealry is a money making enterprise. And the usual rubbish planning is the casue of it not having enough spaces. I wonder of they recruit staff in the admin/ management departments from SBC?

Hope you have some success and  you don't have to visit regularly. :)

Offline Mart

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Re: Parking Great Western Hospital
« Reply #8 on: September 26, 2007, 07:32:00 PM »
Evening Adver, March 2006:

SWINDON'S flagship hospital raked in more than £600,000 in parking charges from patients and visitors.

Figures obtained under the Freedom of Information Act lift the lid on the money-spinning parking regime run by the town's health chiefs.

Swindon and Marlborough NHS Trust which manages the Great Western Hospital netted £674,000 in parking charges in 2004/5.


Evening Adver July 2007

HOSPITAL users have pleaded with the Great Western Hospital not to raise parking charges by up to 67 per cent.

Hospital bosses had planned to increase the cost of short stays, while bowing to public criticism by reducing the cost of all-day parking.

Tucked away at the bottom of the article:

Andy Bowman, the hospital's head of estates and facilities, said in a report to the board: "The trust has received adverse national press criticism for having one of the highest long stay car parking charges in the country."

He added: "The charging structure for car-parking at the Great Western Hospital campus continues to be unbalanced and highly punitive towards long-stay users. A move to a flatter charging structure will, to some extent, address public criticism concerning high long stay car parking fees."


My view, well, following your appointment you are issued a stamped ticket issued by the department you are visiting. You cannot exit the car park without the ticket without coughing the £35, that'll fix the park and ride scam. Where your appointment is delayed at the hospital your ticket will be so endorsed to allow the waiver of any fine the resultant overstay may have incurred.

There is all kind of flash things you could do with barcoded appointment cards, car registrations and patient codes, but teeny tiny steps.

Flippant answer is of course to buy a second hand ambulance.

Finally, what the frig is a hospital doing with a head of estates and facilities? And, since we have one, why in the hell is the problem being allowed to persist, and, final finally, it appears that he is sensitive to 'adverse...criticism'

Back to a familiar theme, national institutions being modernised into the stone age and run by slick scrotes in shiny suits. Wonder how many nurses you could trade a head of estates and facilities for?

Hallo by the way.



Sometimes I think you have to march right in and demand your rights, even if you don’t know what your rights are, or who the person is you’re talking to. Then, on the way out, slam the door.

Offline DavidPayne

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Re: Parking Great Western Hospital
« Reply #9 on: September 30, 2007, 10:00:30 AM »
Jandra,

I am most grateful for your contribution and how right you are to be angry - if only more of us were and expressed ourselves to the conniving unfortunates (in that their souls are certainly lost) in authority, whose daily impetus it seems is to devise ever more ways to extract money from the community, no matter what the level of council tax. In fact the tax system over all with its (deliberately) confusing complexity, is never satisfied and has achieved the status of stalker.

That parking fees apply at all at a hospital and then at one located so far from residential areas that no one would ever use it for private parking is a true shame. That the pricing scheme is planned to catch people out damns the designers and is an expression of all that is worst in government craft. And I will suggest that once you begin to recognise that we are being not just milked for money but made the victims of trickery, the more you will see it in every day practice. You may remember as I the time when the provision to purchase an over-stay ticket for town parking was relinquished,  instantly making us all liable to a new raft of cruel fines for simple error. I defy anyone to explain that decision as other than ignorant opportunism and the devious meanies that pushed it through should not only be sacked but committed to therapy for they are clearly socially degraded. Tax may be the bitter pill we have to swallow but  punitive exploitation is despicable. When those Public Service employees, trusted with the morale of the electorate, stoop to such levels, we know that very notion of respect has been crushed and with it the foundation of trust.

Well done,

David Payne

Offline Tobes

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Re: Parking Great Western Hospital
« Reply #10 on: October 05, 2007, 09:28:07 AM »
The more I think about this thread, the more annoyed I become. Isn't it a sad reflection of our capitalised world-view, that something like the provision of parking spaces so that people can visit their loved ones when they are ill can seen by bean-counters and the excusers of expedience as a legitimate revenue stream? David has expressed views that match mine very closely!

The argument that tickets are required to stop the hospital car-park from being used by commuters seems tenuos to me. Commute to where? There are many many far closer options for someone wanting to fly-park, without them having to add the expense of a bus ticket. IF (and its a big IF) studies have shown that people will park in the hospital car park for non-hospital related reasons, then why on Earth have they chosen such an innapropriate form of enforcement?

I think there may be an opportunity here for us collectively as Talk Swindon to submit a list of clear questions on this subject to Andy Bowman...?
I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it - [attributed to] Voltaire... 'Entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessita' - William of Occam.... 'You have a right to feel offended, but just cos you are offended doesn't mean you are right'

Offline Mart

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Re: Parking Great Western Hospital
« Reply #11 on: December 21, 2007, 12:06:18 PM »
 Hello, mooched across this on the BBC just now, funny old world innit?

Car parking charges at hospitals across Scotland will be capped at £3 per day in the New Year, it has been announced.
Health Secretary Nicola Sturgeon decided on the cap after an independent review by a group of experts.

New guidance will be issued to health boards about the way they allocate staff permits.

The expert panel recommended charges should only be introduced as a last resort. Public sector union Unison issued a "cautious welcome".

The maximum charge will be introduced in January though it will not immediately apply to PFI hospitals.

A further review of the cap, and PFI contracts, will take place and a maximum charge will be introduced at every hospital in Scotland in the summer.


Excessive charges

Ms Sturgeon said: "The presumption is that car parking should be provided free.

"However, the review group recognised - as I do - that charges are necessary in some circumstances.

"In these cases, it is important that patients and staff are treated fairly and do not face excessive charges.

"I believe that a £3 a day cap strikes the right balance between the pressures faced by boards and the interests of patients and staff."

New guidance will be issued to health boards in the New Year.

Greater Glasgow and Clyde Health Board had faced protests from staff and patients.

Parking in the health board area can cost up to £7 per day.

A spokesman for the health board said: "We await detailed guidance in the new year.

"In the meantime, we will continue to apply our existing car parking policy.

"The focus of our approach has absolutely been on the needs of patients and visitors and will remain so."


I would welcome a portion of rambling nonsense explaining to me how the Jocks can do this and we can't.
Sometimes I think you have to march right in and demand your rights, even if you don’t know what your rights are, or who the person is you’re talking to. Then, on the way out, slam the door.

Offline Geoff Reid

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Re: Parking Great Western Hospital
« Reply #12 on: January 04, 2008, 10:09:55 PM »

I would welcome a portion of rambling nonsense explaining to me how the Jocks can do this and we can't.

I won't ramble.....


....it's because they happily wear skirts with a dead animal stapled on the front and stupid bloody tartan socks.

You're not allowed to discriminate against anything wearing a skirt....and skirt wearers obviously need extra help when parking the motor  :)

Offline Mart

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Re: Parking Great Western Hospital
« Reply #13 on: January 05, 2008, 11:18:18 AM »
I'm off to Dorothy Perkins then. Something floral.

I bet this is irritating if you live just off the border.

Scotland seems to be turning out quite nice, but then it has foisted most of it's undesirables onto the English. I hope Mr Salmon get's independence and repatriates the buggers.

Salmon, Sturgeon.....something fishy is going on.
Sometimes I think you have to march right in and demand your rights, even if you don’t know what your rights are, or who the person is you’re talking to. Then, on the way out, slam the door.

Got Signal

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Re: Parking Great Western Hospital
« Reply #14 on: December 04, 2011, 05:28:23 PM »
This thread opened in 2007 and here we are again http://www.swindonadvertiser.co.uk/news/9397810.Hospital_parking_system_deemed_a_failure/?ref=mr

Offline jennyb

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Re: Parking Great Western Hospital
« Reply #15 on: December 05, 2011, 07:32:14 AM »
This thread opened in 2007 and here we are again http://www.swindonadvertiser.co.uk/news/9397810.Hospital_parking_system_deemed_a_failure/?ref=mr


Do we know who is responsible for the design of this ?

It takes wisdom to know what you know and wisdom to know what you don't know and when to call in those who do. Often the people who do know will advise that evidence and research are very helpful when making decisions. Who knows it might even save a bit of money.

Got Signal

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Re: Parking Great Western Hospital
« Reply #16 on: December 05, 2011, 08:09:48 AM »
Is it SBC? According to this annotation from Someone  it is the Tory controlled council http://www.theyworkforyou.com/whall/?gid=2010-07-13c.245.0

Offline Tig

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Re: Parking Great Western Hospital
« Reply #17 on: January 11, 2012, 04:24:11 PM »
Over the last 9 months I have had to visit GWH due to my father being unwell, i have no objects to paying for the car park when visiting and when I take my dad he has a blue badge.
However I am very disaponted in the system for 2 reasons.
1- the reduction in blue disabled bays. Since the new system has been installed they have reduced the amount of blue bays (which are free to park in and are outside of the barried parking), on one occasion my mum could not find a space and had to enter the barried area so not to be late for his treatment. On leaving she was told to press the intercom and explain the situation which she did, however when she did she was bascially told she should not have parked in the barried area and she was made to feel like she was lying about having a blue badge. If she had of waited for one of the few blue bays dad would have been late starting his treatment, my parents have to visit fornightly and this should of thing just aids presure to a very stressful time.
2. last week dad was taken ill and i went to the hospital and due to the layout and time it takes to get in made an already stress time worse.

On saying that the barrier system did mean i did not have to worry if my ticket ran out.

More blue bays and entrance and I would be happier.