"Parking sham!"

About: William Harvey Hospital

(as the patient),

Was literally a car crash when trying to attend an appointment today.

I arrived half an hour early for my appointment, huge queue just to get through the barrier into the car park, waited ten minutes. Finally got in to find total bedlam. Queue of cars right round the whole car park waiting for spaces, one or two people trying to get out of spaces but couldn't because of the amount of cars waiting to park blocking their exits.

One person trying to get out hit another car, causing another hold up. After 20 minutes of waiting while they took details and photographs and still no spaces, I decided to leave and look elsewhere and maybe walk. I had to stop, temporarily blocking all traffic to try and pay to get out despite not having even parked and the machine took 2 pounds out of my bank account. Fine. I just wanted to get out at this point.

I get to the barrier and the exit barrier won't read my parking ticket and I am now blocking everyone else yet again from leaving. I pressed the help button and was finally let out 2 pounds lighter in pocket and now 45 minutes late for my appointment. I parked at the back of the hospital eventually and paid another 2 pounds.

Fortunately the staff in the clinic were as usual lovely and understanding because everyone had been late due to the same problem. This is utterly ridiculous and for what purpose? To me the only reason can be to make money and yet how does it even benefit the NHS long term if every patient is late for appointments? On other occasions I would have needed to leave to pick up children from school etc and my appointment slot would have been wasted.

This is totally unacceptable both on my fairly limited income and on NHS resources in wasted appointment slots. Utterly disgraceful.

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Response from Julie Pearce, Chief Nurse + Director of Quality + Operations, East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust

Thank you for providing feedback and I am very sorry to read about your experience which must have been very stressful for you. We are aware of the current difficulties with car parking - we are undertaking building work to expand car parking capacity.

Please do email me your details and I will arrange for the estates manager to respond directly to the concerns you have raised. My email address is Julie.pearce1@nhs.net

Thank you again we do take feedback very seriously.

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