ENGLAND has an ‘unforgivable’ NHS workforce crisis that threatens future patient safety, new research has found.

A study by doctors trade union, BMA, has found that the number of doctors per 1,000 people in England is 25 years behind comparable European Union nations.

The organisation says this means an estimate of almost 50,000 extra doctors are needed to meet the country’s current healthcare challenges.

According to the Association’s research, there are 2.8 doctors per 1,000 people in England compared to an average of 3.7 in similarly developed EU countries.

Other than Poland, this means England has the second lowest doctor-to-person ratio than any other comparable EU nation.

Now the union says that not only does this shortfall impact patient care and safety, but it also puts "immense pressure" on existing NHS staff.