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COVID-19: Spain’s death toll surges to 2,696

Skating rink in Madrid has begun functioning as ad hoc morgue as funeral services unable to cope with overflow

Alyssa McMurtry   | 24.03.2020
COVID-19: Spain’s death toll surges to 2,696


In the last 24 hours, Spain saw 514 new deaths from COVID-19 and over 6,000 new confirmed cases, according to official data released on Tuesday.

In total, the country reported 2,696 deaths and 39,673 cases.

The Madrid region, which has recorded over 1,500 deaths, has been forced to begin using a large skating rink as a temporary morgue as regular funeral services have been unable to cope with the mounting number of contagious corpses.

A military-style hospital has also been set up in the capital city’s major conference center. With as many as 5,000 beds to treat COVID-19 patients, it is expected to soon become the country’s largest hospital.

The latest figures show that a further 2,636 people are currently in intensive care units.

The increasing mortalities in Spain have been moving faster than in either China or Italy, reported daily El Pais.

Hospitals and nursing homes across the country report a shortage of protective equipment for healthcare workers and increasingly dire situations.

Around 5,400 healthcare workers have tested positive for the virus so far.

On Monday, it emerged that the Spanish military discovered dead bodies lying in their beds in nursing homes and other elderly residents completely abandoned.

Spain has been on strict lockdown for 10 days. Unlike other countries, people are not even allowed to leave their homes for a stroll or other exercise – only to perform essential tasks.

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