Hospitals that charge more than $10-a-day for parking have been told to immediately freeze rates and to begin offering multi-day discounts by October.
Health Minister Eric Hoskins says hospitals will have to offer five, ten and 30-day passes that reduce parking rates by 50% to ease the burden on patients and visitors.
He adds patients get better faster when they`re by loved ones and he does not think parking fees should be an obstacle for those who have to make frequent visits.
The Ontario Hospital Association is not pleased, saying with frozen budgets the last four years, the decision to cut parking fees could not come “at a worse time.“
The province says parking generates about $100-million-a-year for hospital and while the ordered discounts will mean reduced revenue, Hoskins maintains it`s just a “tiny,tiny“ fraction of their budgets.
The government estimates reduced parking fees will benefit about 900,000 patients and visitors every year.