Hospital pay parking revenue in B.C. topped $36M last fiscal

Ministry of Health assures patients and visitors parking rates have and will not increase

A group of volunteers trying to end pay parking at hospitals across the province say health authorities raked in more than ever in the 2019 fiscal year.

According to the group HospitalPayParking.ca, all five health B.C. authorities posted their most recent consolidated financial statements showing hospital pay parking revenues hit a combined all-time high of $36.4 million.

The increases were “well in excess of the rate of inflation,” a news release said Tuesday.

READ MORE: Hospital pay parking has a new opponent

The data shared by the group shows pay parking revenues for the Northern Health Authority increased by more than 45 per cent, with $1.034 million collected in 2019, compared to $713,000 in 2018 – a difference of $321,000.

Pay parking revenues for the Interior Health Authority rose by more than 13 per cent, with $6.036 million collected this year compared to $5.328 million last year – a difference of $708,000.

Screenshot of HospitalPayParking.ca Hospital Pay Parking – 2018 vs 2019 Revenues table.

“British Columbians continue to shovel money into parking meters at public hospitals throughout the province despite widespread opposition,” the release said.

However, the Ministry of Health said parking rates for patients and visitors have not and will not increase.

Spokesperson Meribeth Burton told Black Press Media other variables led to larger overall parking revenues.

“All health authorities report an increase in demand and utilization,” Burton said in an email.

“Some health authorities report the addition of new parking stalls at some sites and others cite increased service hours since [Health Minister Adrian Dix] introduced and implemented the surgical and diagnostic strategy in 2017 where MRI and other procedures occur around the clock.”

READ MORE: Surrey council approves free two-hour parking at city hall, around hospital

In the case of Interior Health, Burton said the increase was in part due to the receipt of one-time cost recovery of more than $300,000 “because they were erroneously charged GST by their parking contractor.”

She said the freeze in rates will continue as the government reviews parking issues.

READ MORE: Dix promises review of pay parking at hospitals

Burton also said every health authority has programs in place to support patients and visitors who have a financial hardship to ensure that parking is not a barrier to care.



karissa.gall@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Maple Ridge musician finds inspiration in Thailand

Bob Westfall has recorded many songs and music videos in Asia

Super 30 screening at ACT in Maple Ridge

Movie is based on international best-selling book by Maple Ridge doctor

Camp closing means it’s time to heal and move on, says MLA

Watershed moment for Maple Ridge, says D’Eith

Local rink wins King Cash Spiel

Ryan Rink wins World Curling Tour event in Maple Ridge

Several charges after arrest Friday in Maple Ridge

Court appearance Monday in Port Coquitlam

‘It’s almost surreal’: B.C. fire chief, sidekick Sammy recap rescue mission in Bahamas

Chief Larry Watkinson and Sam the disaster dog spent 8 days assisting a search and rescue team

‘Time to take action:’ Children advocates call for national youth suicide strategy

Council wants Ottawa to make reporting of suicides and attempted suicides mandatory for data collection

Canadian inflation decelerates to 1.9% as gas prices weaken

August was the sixth straight month that price growth was 1.9 per cent or higher

Defense says burden of proof not met in double murder case against Victoria father

Closing statements begin in trial for man accused of killing daughters Christmas 2017

B.C. dog breeder banned again after 46 dogs seized

The SPCA seized the animals from Terry Baker, 66, in February 2018

Surrey mom allegedly paid $400,000 for son in U.S. college bribery scam

Xiaoning Sui, 48, was arrested in Spain on Monday night

B.C. population on pace to fall behind Alberta

Provincial population could reach almost seven million in 2043, but Alberta is growing faster

Three dogs found shot dead in Prince George ditch

The three adult dogs appeared to be well cared for before being found with gunshot wounds, BC SPCA says

Vancouver police could be using drones to fight crime by end of year

The police department has already purchased three drones, as well as three others for training

Most Read