"My car was stickered"

About: Western General Hospital (Edinburgh)

(as a volunteer/advocate),

I am a volunteer driver, one of a team provided by the RVS in Edinburgh. Our job is to take patients home from hospital or take them to another hospital.

On Thursday this week (24 March) I was asked to take a patient from The Western General to the infirmary in Dumfries. I was informed that the patient was about to be brought down to the Discharge Lounge.

When I arrived to collect her I parked as normally outside the Discharge Lounge.

But the patient was not there and the staff in the Discharge Lounge did not know about her.

There was a delay of twenty minutes before the patient appeared and we went to my car straight away.

I discovered an NHS sticker on my window called "Notice of Parking Contravention", telling me that my registration number had been taken and if I did it again my car would be removed.

I have been doing this voluntary job for two years and have always parked outside the Discharge Lounge.

I am not there for the fun of free parking and am away as soon as the patient is ready.

Who is in charge of the staff who decided to sticker my car?

Can I be reassured that volunteer drivers are not going to be told to move on in this way in the future

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Response from Jeannette Morrison, Head of Patient Experience, NHS Lothian

Dear VolDriverPeter

I was sorry to read of your car being stickered at the Western General Hospital last week when you came to collect a patient for their discharge.

I appreciate how frustrating this must have been for you.

The carparking arrangements at the Western General Hospital can be vey difficult as there is insufficient car parking spaces for the number of people who need to park on the hospital site.

I am not sure if you had a volunteer sticker displayed on your car as this should have prevented your car being stickered and I understand that these can be issued from the RVS.

Once again please accept my apologies for your inconviennce.


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Update posted by VolDriverPeter (a volunteer/advocate)

Of course I had my volunteer sticker on my dashboard.

I suggest that you make sure everyone involved in enforcing parking regulations is informed about volunteer drivers.

I was at the Western again on Tuesday and on the good advice of the nurse in the discharge lounge I had a polite word with someone in security.

He, in turn, spoke to the parking people and the person who stickered my car came over.

It was clear that he had not been briefed adequately.

I showed him the volunteer notice which was clearly visible on my dashboard.

Happy to help with your internal communications