17 Feb 2018
More than 2000 health workers across the country are on waiting lists to receive permits allowing them to park at work.
Figures obtained by the Scottish Conservatives have revealed 2247 NHS workers across five different health boards are currently unable to park at hospitals and health centres.
This is despite many newer healthcare facilities being built at out-of-town locations where more space is available.
Shadow health secretary Miles Briggs said health boards should be making it easier for staff, patients and visitors to park at hospitals, and urged the SNP government to conduct a national review on the issue.
The Freedom of Information responses showed five health boards currently have staff waiting for parking permits.
More than half of those waiting (1236) were in NHS Lothian, which has received repeated complaints about parking at its main Edinburgh Royal Infirmary site.
513 workers are waiting in NHS Grampian, along with 363 in Forth Valley.
Scotland’s biggest health board – NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde – currently has a waiting list of 88, while at NHS Tayside it’s 47.
Scottish Conservative shadow health secretary Miles Briggs said:
“MSPs across the country are always being contacted about just how hard it is to get parked at hospitals.
“If we have thousands of staff awaiting a permit, you can imagine how difficult it is for patients and visitors.
“Health workers are under enough strain without having to spend ages before their shift looking for a parking space.
“Many new hospital sites are built out-of-town where space isn’t an issue – it simply should not have got to this stage.
“It’s all very well encouraging staff to find greener ways to get to work, but the priority has to be making it easy for them to get to work conveniently and on time.
“Increasingly I hear from medical professionals who tell me on too many occasions they are driving around looking for parking spaces when patients are waiting to see them in clinics.
“It’s time for SNP ministers to undertake a national review of NHS parking and transport and look to how new solutions can be developed across Scotland.”