NHS under pressure: the 15 hospitals with the greatest bed occupancy rates in England

Some hospitals were running out of available beds last week - here we reveal the 15 fullest hospitals in England.

NHS hospitals across England are pushing capacity levels, with some running out of beds completely in the last week, official health figures show.

Nine in 10 acute hospitals had more than 85% of their beds filled in the week ending December 18, according to data published by NHS England.

According to the Royal College of Emergency Medicine, hospitals are considered to be too busy if more than 85% of their available general and acute beds are occupied by patients. After this, patient care is thought to be compromised.

Health bosses are expecting an influx of patients after recent industrial action by nurses, ambulance workers and paramedics may have led some to delay care. But last week’s figures show occupancy rates were already high, at an average of 94.4% across England last week, leaving just 5,569 beds remaining each day on average across all NHS acute trusts.

The occupancy rate varies widely across the country with some at maximum capacity, while others were less than half full. Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust in London was the only hospital to be less than 50% full, while Queen Victoria Hospital NHS Foundation Trust in the South East and Liverpool Women’s NHS Foundation Trust in the North West were both under 60% full.

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The Northern Care Alliance NHS Foundation Trust in Greater Manchester had the greatest total number of beds available with 401 in total, followed by Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust (both in the North West) at 178 and Barts Health NHS Trust in London with 129.

Here we reveal the 15 fullest hospitals in England last week. The analysis is based on the average number of occupied and free beds in the seven days to 18 December.

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