Responding to the latest NHS England situation report data, RCN Director for England, Patricia Marquis, said:
"These figures are no grounds for complacency. Our members remain under intense pressure and the data shows the level of staff absence is still very high with bed occupancy rates showing little sign of declining.
“Nursing staff are facing huge seasonal pressures, with tens of thousands of vacancies, an enormous backlog and no end in sight.
“As ministers relax the COVID-19 restrictions, nursing staff are exhausted. They need government to grip the reality, come up with a fully-funded workforce plan and invest in those staff or there is real risk to patient care and of an exodus of experienced nurses.”