RVH car park PFI – exploiting the sick
The example of the RVH car park epitomises the abuse associated with privatisation. Built at a cost of £2m through a private finance initiative (PFI), the company that runs it has been able to recoup the cost of its construction after just seven years of a 20-year contract. In 2002 alone, the car park generated more than £500,000 in profits. Yet, the hospital has only received a fraction of this money. Under the PFI contract the company agreed to pay the RVH £25,000 a year for the use of the land and a further £15,000 a year if profits exceeded initial forecasts. These terms have resulted in the hospital receiving less than 5 per cent of the annual profits. Rather than going back into the health service, this money, extracted from patients, their families and hospital employees, is being drained away. This is the reality of private sector “investment” in our public services.