B.C. reinstating parking fees at hospitals, health authority sites

CHEK

Parking fees at hospitals and other health authority sites will be reinstated on Mar. 4, almost two years after the provincial government waived fees due to the pandemic.

Health Minister Adrian Dix says fees are coming back into effect because people who weren’t going to the hospital were taking advantage of the free parking.

“Maintaining across-the-board free hospital parking is making it hard for patients, staff, volunteers and visitors to find a spot, as non-hospital users are taking advantage of the situation to park for free while conducting business that’s not hospital related,” said Adrian Dix, Minister of Health. “These hospital parking spots must be available for those who need them most.”

Free parking will still be available for patients receiving dialysis treatment or undergoing cancer treatment in acute-care programs, and for parents or caregivers of children staying in the hospital overnight.

Volunteers will also be allowed to park for free, and there will be financial hardship provisions in place on a case-by-case basis.

Parking fees were first waived in April 2020 initially to prevent the spread of COVID-19, so that people wouldn’t have to use parking metres and touch the buttons or touch screens that were touched by someone else previously.

In a release, Dix says parking fees have been frozen for four years, and the freeze will continue.

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