In brief

BMJ 2013; 347 doi: (Published 12 November 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;347:f6775

NHS in England has 20 000 nursing vacancies: The Royal College of Nursing has said that nearly 20 000 nursing posts in England are unfilled, after it conducted a survey of all acute, mental health, and community NHS trusts using freedom of information requests.1 A total of 61 organisations replied (24% response rate), whose average vacancy rate was 6%, although in some trusts it was as high as 16%. The college acted after the government stopped collecting data on vacancies in 2001, when the vacancy rate was 2.5%.

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