Elderly and disabled patients at Mayo University Hospital are being forced to walk long distances due to a lack of parking spaces at the entrance to the hospital.
So says Mayo county councillor Cyril Burke who called on the Health Service Executive to act fast to address the problem.
“There is little to no parking at the front of the hospital. I think there is only maybe three or four spots for people that have disabilities and there is a fair bit of green area and footpaths that could be re-engineered. It is urgent that we get something done and we as a group (SPC) will do as much as we can to help,” said Cllr Burke at last Thursday’s meeting of the Roads Strategic Policy Committee of Mayo County Council.
“An awful lot of people have come to me to complain about it and I know they have complained to others as well, you don’t realise it until you pull up with someone elderly yourself and there is no place to go with them,” Cllr Burke added.
He said the funding budget from the HSE is ‘tight’ and that the council should help in whatever way they can.
“Everyone will benefit from it, especially the elderly and the disabled people,” he said.
The spaces in question are right outside the main door into the hospital and the meeting heard it is a frequent bottleneck due to double parking. The main car park is towards the rear of the hospital grounds.
SPC member Michael Moran from Westport said he had witnessed the problems the lack of parking at the entrance causes.
“I have seen elderly people completely short of breath because of them being forced to walk from the car-park to the entrance because there was no parking at the front,” he told the meeting.
Cllr Brendan Mulroy said he encountered situations where people were doing good deeds for elderly people who were not able to get parking at the entrance.
“I have seen instances where members of the public have come out of the hospital, and not knowing them, parked the car for elderly or disabled people while they went in the hospital,” said Cllr Mulroy.