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Clamping nightmare makes patients suffer

Clampers have become a scourge for patients attending a south Dublin health clinic.

A shortage of parking spaces at the Balally Primary Care Centre is causing difficulties for patients and staff with cars there clamped on a daily basis.

The rollout of the swine flu vaccination programme has made the problem even more acute, with an increased number of patients. Olivia Mitchell, Fine Gael TD for Dublin South, has attacked the HSE for failing to provide enough parking and leaving dozens of patients to "become victims of predatory clampers".

"It was madness for the HSE to take on a long-term lease for such a facility without securing at least some parking arrangements for their clients.

"Since the centre opened there have been issues surrounding parking with just six free spaces available to the clinic most of which are used by staff."

She points to the fact that Primary Care Centres are attended mostly by pensioners and parents of young children.


Ms Mitchell says she has been contacted by dozens of constituents whose cars have been clamped.

The clampers "have declined to entertain the possibility of refunding anyone who has appealed despite the worthiness of their claims".

Ms Mitchell says that while the care centre staff do their best to help patients with alternative places to park, these include paying to park at the Dundrum Town Centre or using LUAS park 'n' ride facilities.

"This is not realistic due to the costs, availability and distances involved."