Most people think the biggest complaints at hospitals would be about waiting times, medical treatment, internal décor or the food. They’re wrong. They are about traffic congestion and car parking.
A hospital recently told me that 1 in 3 of their staff arrives at work late because they were searching for a car parking space. 25% of patients arrive angry because of the lack of car parking spaces (their car parks are full by 9am and appointments start at 10am). The hospital built a new car park but within 6 months things were even worse. “It’s as though we’d shouted ‘BRING YOUR CAR’ to our staff” the hospital said.
Most Mayors, MPs or City Leaders want their towns and cities to be lucrative, liveable and lovable. Congestion and parking problems at hospitals are a source of stress and frustration for everyone. It’s not good when a patient, who has health issues, arrives at a hospital angry, stressed and frustrated. So, here are my 10 top tips for Mayors, MPs or City Leaders to get started in cutting traffic congestion and car parking chaos at hospitals so that patients can arrive on time:
- Build partnerships between the hospital, local authority, public transport operators and other employers.
- Develop a toolkit to assist with implementation of a Travel Demand Management program.
- Provide resources, finance and people including appointing a travel plan co-ordinator.
- Undertake area or site audits of existing transport to identify opportunities and barriers.
- Carry out a baseline travel census and travel behaviour survey to identify how people travel to the hospital.
- Review non-commuting travel to understand patient/visitor travel and requirements for deliveries.
- Work with public transport operators. Are there opportunities for staff travel discounts?
- Identify funding opportunities. For example in some cities hospitals help fund commuter shuttle buses.
- Find opportunities. The University of Bristol found a nearby hospital ran a free staff bus between the station and the hospital. They combined funding to expand and extend the service, making it available to staff of both sites.
- Encourage progressive change
Clicking ‘LIKE’ on Facebook does NOTHING (sorry to be so blunt!). If traffic congestion and car parking is a nightmare at your local hospital please send these 10 Top Tips to your Mayor, MP, Council and hospital.
If you enjoyed these tips and want more…. I’m available for talks and workshops or buy my book. Decongestion is 232 pages of help, advice and information in paperback (RRP $24.95) or e-book & Kindle formats http://amzn.to/1JP64jb
Download here 6 Hospitals