The INMO says the pay issue is partly to blame

There are four nursing jobs available for every qualified nurse in this country.

Intensive care units and operating theatres are now the most in need of staff.

The Health service figures also show it costs 20 per cent less to directly employ nurses rather than use an agency to fill the gaps.

The INMO's Phil Ní Sheadghadha, says the issue of pay needs to be addressed: