The coronavirus death toll in Spain has jumped by 514 in a single day, as the situation in the country quickly worsens. Official figures show that 2,696 people have now died in the country and close to 40,000 are infected. About 5,400 health care workers are among those confirmed cases.
Spain is the worst affected country in Europe after Italy, which has recorded more than 6,000 deaths so far. While cases have been mostly concentrated in Madrid, Catalonia, and the Basque Country, infection numbers are growing in other regions.
Castilia-La Mancha and Castilla y Leon, which border the capital, have seen a big jump in cases. Both regions have large elderly populations. The police criticized “irresponsible people” on Tuesday, including some who have left hospitals without being formally discharged.
In the capital Madrid, meanwhile, the municipal funeral home has stopped collecting Covid-19 victims because of a lack of protective equipment. The city is to use a major ice rink, the Palacio de Hielo (Ice Palace), as a temporary mortuary where bodies will be stored until funeral homes can collect them, officials told Spanish media.