NHS Staffed Beds and Percentage Occupancy

$179 / year

This dataset includes information split by location for health board of available staffed beds, hospital and council area. Due to the variability in the number of available beds in a ward or specialty, the total number of available beds is calculated by taking the average of the number of beds available in each day of the quarter and percentage occupancy for acute specialties for acute hospital care services.


To provide an effective, safe and efficient service to patients, hospitals must balance the provision of staffed beds against anticipated demand. Historically, the total number of beds had been reducing in line with evolving models of healthcare provision, which aim to reduce the frequency and duration of hospital admissions. This downward trend is currently continuing. The following indicators only take into account the use of beds by inpatients.

The main unit used to measure bed provision within this publication is an available staffed bed. As the number of available beds in a ward or specialty can vary, due to factors such as demand and seasonality (peaking in the quarter ending March and falling in the quarter ending September), the total number of available beds is calculated by taking the average of the number of beds available in each day of the quarter.

There were on average 13,247 available staffed beds for all acute specialties in the quarter ending September 2017. This is a reduction of 2.2% percent since the quarter ending September 2016 and a reduction of 4.0% over five years. Bed use is measured by percentage occupancy. The number of average available staffed beds and percentage occupancy for acute specialties. The fluctuation in the percentage occupancy can be explained by seasonal demand. Bed occupancy, for example, increases during winter months because of increased hospital activity at that time of year. For all acute specialties in the quarter ending September 2017, the percentage occupancy was 85%. This has remained at the same level when compared to the quarter ending September 2016. For the same time period five years ago, the percentage occupancy was 84%.

Date Created


Last Modified




Update Frequency


Temporal Coverage

1st January 2013 to 31st March 2018

Spatial Coverage



John Snow Labs; Information Services Division (ISD) Scotland;

Source License URL

Source License Requirements


Source Citation



Percentage Occupancy, Hospital Acute Specialties, NHS Staffed Beds, Beds for All Acute Specialties, Acute Hospital Care Services, Bed Occupancy, Patient Administration System, Beds Methodology

Other Titles

Acute Hospital Care Performance Measure For NHS Staffed Beds, Acute Hospitals' Quality of Care Comparison for NHS Staffed Beds and Percentage Occupancy, Average Available Staffed Beds and Percentage Occupancy For Acute Specialties

Quarter_DateIndicates the final date of the quarter.date-
Quarter_CoverageIndicates the quarter period in text format.string-
Health_Board_CodeIndicates either the 9 digit health board code or "scot" for Scotland. For the residence data files, the Health board code and name is in relation to the health board of residence. For the treatment data files, the Health board code and name is in relation to the health board of treatment.string-
Health_Board_NameIndicates the health board name.string-
Location_CodeIndicates either the 5 digit hospital code; 9 digit health board or council code; or “scot” for Scotland.string-
Location_NameIndicates the name of the location.string-
Specialty_NameIndicates the name of the specialty.string-
All_Available_Staffed_BedsIndicates all the available staffed beds.numberlevel : Ratio
Total_Occupied_BedsIndicates the total occupied beds.numberlevel : Ratio
Daily_Average_Available_Staffed_BedsIndicates the daily average available staffed beds.numberlevel : Ratio
Daily_Average_Occupied_BedsIndicates the daily average available occupied beds.numberlevel : Ratio
Percentage_OccupancyIndicates the percentage occupancy for staffed beds.numberlevel : Ratio
2014-09-30Jul - Sep-14scotScotlandscotScotlandObstetrics grouping
2013-03-31Jan - Mar-13scotScotlandscotScotlandUnspecified7693.0085.48
2013-06-30Apr - Jun-13scotScotlandscotScotlandUnspecified8078.0088.77
2013-09-30Jul - Sep-13scotScotlandscotScotlandUnspecified7851.0085.34
2013-12-31Oct - Dec-13scotScotlandscotScotlandUnspecified6740.0073.26
2014-03-31Jan - Mar-14scotScotlandscotScotlandUnspecified7939.8488.22
2014-06-30Apr - Jun-14scotScotlandscotScotlandUnspecified7352.4080.80
2014-09-30Jul - Sep-14scotScotlandscotScotlandUnspecified7197.7078.24
2014-12-31Oct - Dec-14scotScotlandscotScotlandUnspecified7329.0079.66
2015-03-31Jan - Mar-15scotScotlandscotScotlandUnspecified7069.8478.55