Blood clinic based at gym set to close

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Patients outraged with having to pay for parking outside a Wigan blood clinic face a further setback as the facility is set to close.

The phlebotomy clinic annex at the DW Sports Gym on Stadium Way will close its doors later this month with patients told to use other sites.

However, Trust bosses have warned service users may face long waiting times to use the nearby Thomas Linacre Centre.

A Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh NHS statement added the organisation had received “a high volume of complaints” about the new parking charges and this had prompted the decision.

Before August patients could use the site without paying for parking at the DW owned site. But bosses from the fitness firm introduced new parking tariffs to “protect parking facilities for members.”

It meant those calling in for regular blood test services faced paying £2 for each visit or risk being handed a hefty fine.

One patient told the Evening Post: “My main concern is that now the service is being withdrawn it means that all those people who made use of the service will now have the inconvenience of having to queue at the Thomas Linacre with even less access to parking and much longer waiting times.”

Another patient, who also asked to remain anonymous, said: “This was always on the cards after the parking charges came in. It does mean I will have to travel further to use a blood clinic but at least the parking charge will be going to the NHS rather than a private company.”

A spokesman for DW Fitness could not be reached before the Evening Post’s deadline.

A previous statement about the parking charges read: “We recently introduced a car parking system, following member feedback regarding difficulty parking.”