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Parliament hears about Headway’s help for families in crisis Main Image

Parliament hears about Headway’s help for families in crisis

Thu 06 Dec 2018

A hard-hitting case from Headway’s Emergency Fund has been aired in Parliament, showing the dire financial impact of hospital car parking charges on families in times of crisis.

Harlow MP Robert Halfon used a question in the House of Commons today to continue the campaign to scrap car parking charges at NHS hospitals in Wales.

Speaking in Parliament, Mr Halfon said: “The brain injury charity Headway has supported families who have incurred hospital car parking charges of as much as £248 in just seven days. Given that all hospitals in Wales have now abolished hospital car parking charges, will my hon. Friend make representations to the Health Secretary on abolishing them in England too?”

Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Wales Nigel Adams MP responded for the Government, saying:  “It is clear—everybody in the House will know—that there is no stronger champion of such causes than my right hon. Friend. We allow individual hospitals to take their own decisions in England, assisted by clear guidance. There are potential additional costs of a blanket removal of charging, which could be significant, but we keep our ears open.“

Following the exchange, Dr Clare Mills, Headway’s Public Affairs Manager, said: “We are so pleased to be able to support families in the immediate aftermath of a brain injury through our Emergency Fund, which can help with some of the financial consequences of brain injury such as travel, accommodation and parking. But if NHS hospitals followed the Government’s guidance on car parking charges, then most of the people we support would not have to pay to park.

“Headway will continue to talk to the Government, calling for more pressure to be put on NHS hospitals to follow the guidelines.

“When brain injury strikes, families are desperate to be at the bedside of their loved one. They need to be able to focus on their family, not on remembering to move the car or feed the meter.”