More than 30,000 NHS jobs are at risk of being cut, the Royal College of Nursing has said.
Since the coalition came to power in May 2010, the NHS workforce in England has decreased by 28,500 posts, and a further 32,700 jobs are at risk, the RCN said.
Between May 2010 and July this year, the number of qualified nurses working for the health service reduced by more than 6,000.
The RCN warned that the NHS is "sleepwalking into a crisis", saying that reduction of staff comes as there is a soaring demand for care.
The ageing population and the increasing number of people living with long-term conditions mean that demand for services continues to rise.