Car parking charges are boosting the profits of hospitals in England to the tune of more than£110 million a year, it has been revealed.
Staff are paying£27 million in fees, official figures show, with patients and their families and friends also being hit for£83 million.
The data from the Department of Health show that three NHS trusts each made more than£2 million from visitors' fees alone in 2007/08.
Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust received£2,469,978 from visitors and a further£573,095 from staff, while Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust made£2,022,546, plus£1,055,045 from employees.
University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust recorded equivalent numbers of£2,166,346 and£758,406.
Worthing & Southlands Hospitals NHS Trust in Sussex had the highest average hourly charge for visitors at£3.20, while fees in Yeovil and Southampton were only slightly lower at£3.
The Department of Health released the data in response to parliamentary questions, but the refusal to provide details by 68 trusts means that the true parking bill will be even higher.
Related article: Call for NHS nurses to petition prime minister over carparking
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