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Covid hospital staff absences rise for fourth week in a row

An average of 28,560 NHS staff at hospital trusts in England were ill with coronavirus or having to self-isolate each day in the week to April 3.

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The number of NHS staff at hospitals in England off due to Covid has risen for the fourth week in a row, new figures show (PA)

The number of NHS staff at hospitals in England off due to Covid has risen for the fourth week in a row, new figures show (PA)

The number of NHS staff at hospitals in England off due to Covid has risen for the fourth week in a row, new figures show (PA)

The number of NHS staff at hospitals in England off due to Covid has risen for the fourth week in a row, new figures show.

An average of 28,560 NHS staff at hospital trusts in England were ill with coronavirus or having to self-isolate each day in the week to April 3, according to data from NHS England.

This is up 4% on the previous week, but the rate of increase appears to be slowing after previous week-on-week rises of 19% and 31%.

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(PA Graphics)

(PA Graphics)

Press Association Images

(PA Graphics)

The figures suggest that, on average, one in 33 (3%) NHS staff working in hospital trusts were off sick or self-isolating due to Covid each day last week, based on the latest available NHS workforce data.

NHS England medical director Professor Stephen Powis said: “Today’s figures sum up just how busy NHS staff currently are.

“Alongside increasing numbers of Covid and emergency patients and with 94% of beds now occupied, they are also dealing with the highest number of staff off sick due to the virus for 10 weeks – an average of 28,500 staff each day.

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(PA Graphics)

(PA Graphics)

Press Association Images

(PA Graphics)

“Despite the sustained demand, staff are continuing to focus on addressing the Covid-19 backlogs and roll out the NHS spring booster programme, so please come forward for your Covid jabs, and if you need NHS help, use the NHS 111 online service.”

The NHS England figures, published on Thursday, also show that the seven-day average number of Covid staff absences at English hospital trusts has fallen across two regions.

The largest fall was 4% in the south west, down from an average of 4,137 a day to 3,976, while there was a 1% fall in the east of England from 2,571 to 2,537.

However, the north east and Yorkshire saw the largest rise in Covid hospital staff absences, up 13% from 4,990 to 5,612.

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