An Aussie teen who is suffering from a rare blood disorder has initiated a petition to completely abolish parking fees charged by New South Wales hospitals.
More than thousands of people have signed the change.org petition that urges the authorities to cap the parking fees, as the teen was worried about family members stopping to visit patients only because of the high amount they were charged for parking at hospitals.
Thirteen-year-old Gidon Goodman has to make frequent visits to a hospital for his regular medical infusions to bring his symptoms under control. He faced the difficulties of paying parking charges, and hence demanded in his petition for parking rates to be handled independently.
“It’s a disincentive to visit someone, which is horrific because people who visit sick people are actually, in my opinion, some of the greatest people in society,” he said. “They should be rewarded for visiting sick people, not slapped with a parking fee.”
News Corp has conducted an investigation in which it was discovered that the sickest patients and their family members were being charged over $100 million per year for parking sedans at hospitals, which is quite exorbitant.
The investigation also found that the parking fees comprise $38.7 million of the hospitals’ revenue, which is a 37 percent hike from the last three years. The Sydney Eye Hospital was declared to be charging the highest parking fees across the country with $64 for six hours and more. The results obtained have shown that the charges strike at the heart when visitors have to pay a huge amount if they have to visit their relative more than once a day.
Goodman stated that his family was able to pay the parking charges but there were many for whom the amount was quite prohibitive. A hospital price regulatory body like the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunary must be asked to pay for the setting of the abolished parking rate at hospitals. “There are people who actually are spending more on hospital parking than on their medication, and if you’re not lucky like we are, it can be a lot, figures like $10,000,” the ABC quoted the Aussie teen as saying. “That can be a third of your income for a year.”
Seeing the rising support for the petition, Health Minister Jillian Skinner’s office claimed that the government was looking into the matter and it will try to provide an affordable car parking for visitors and patients.