Responding to the latest NHS England situation report data, Patricia Marquis, RCN Director for England, said:
“These figures are a bellwether for the huge pressures nursing staff are still under.
“With bed occupancy and staff sickness absence levels still sky high – COVID-19-related staff absence is still more than double what it was at the start of the Omicron wave with bed occupancy running at above 90% – those staff face a daily struggle to provide safe care.
“Ministers must be under no illusions about how dire the situation remains. Exhausted and demoralised nursing staff – also grappling with a huge backlog at a time of tens of thousands of vacancies – see no end in sight.
“The Government needs to come up with a fully-funded workforce plan.”