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Parking fees implemented for ER patients in Regina


Regina hospitals are facing criticism for implementing parking fees for emergency patients. The provincial NDP say it’s the wrong place to do that. Even the health minister questions the decision.

“In an emergency, there’s no time to waste. It’s an emergency and they need to get in to see a doctor immediately. Sick or injured patients don’t have time to fumble with change or an app on their phone,” said NDP MLA Nicole Sarauer during question period on Thursday.

“They should be able to focus on getting in and getting the health care that they need.”

NDP MLA Vicki Mowat echoed the sentiment.

“Should patients have to pay when they go to an emergency room? No. They’re in an emergency situation,” she said. “They should not come back after being in an emergency room with a parking ticket.”

Parking fees have been implemented for ER patients at Regina hospitals. (Wayne Mantyka / CTV News)

Patients must download an app or use a payment terminal. During question period, the minister defended the practice.

“It’s my understanding that this aligns the parking practices at the Regina emergency departments with that of all the hospitals in Saskatoon,” said Minister of Health Everett Hindley.

Hindley said he would ask the SHA about why it’s charging for emergency parking.

“At a time when you may be visiting in an emergency situation, that’s obviously not ideal. That’s the last thing on your mind. You’re wanting to get parked and get your family member or friend, whoever it is the care that they need. It would be my expectation that the SHA would be mindful of those circumstances,” he said.

The SHA is showing some discretion in parking enforcement. Patients who make it through emergency within one hour are not ticketed. Top Stories

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