ERI audit
raises beds

THE Royal College of Nursing (RCN) Scotland has said an audit that showed Edinburgh Royal Infirmary had been operating at 101 per cent capacity reflected the “grave concerns” the organisation had been raising for months.

The Evening News revealed yesterday that there were more patients than beds at the flagship hospital during a two-hour NHS Lothian probe in January.

Ellen Hudson, associate director of RCN Scotland, said: “There’s good evidence to suggest that once you get bed occupancy rates above 85 per cent, the spread of infection is more likely. If bed occupancy rates go over 95 per cent, all the evidence points to a system that cannot cope.”