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Abandoned old folk found dead in their beds in Spanish care home

24 Mar 2020 / coronavirus Print

Abandoned old folk found dead in Spanish care home

Spanish soldiers have found elderly patients in retirement homes abandoned and, in some cases, dead in their beds, the BBC has reported.

Spanish prosecutors said an investigation had been launched.

Daily death toll of 462

The military was disinfecting care homes in Spain, one of Europe's worst hit countries in the coronavirus epidemic, with yesterday’s daily death toll of 462 bringing the total to 2,182.

An ice rink in Madrid, the Palacio de Hielo (Ice Palace), is to be used as a temporary mortuary and is adjacent to the IFEMA congress centre where a field hospital has been set up.

Spanish Defence Minister Margarita Robles said the Government would be "be strict and inflexible when dealing with the way older people are treated".

"The army, during certain visits, found some older people completely abandoned, sometimes even dead in their beds," she said.

Another official said that retirement homes are "an absolute priority for the government" and care home would be extensively monitored.

Cold storage

In normal circumstances, deceased residents are put in cold storage until undertakers arrive.

However, the arrival of properly-equipped funeral staff, in the coronavirus crisis, can take up to 24 hours.

Spain is the second worst-affected European country. Italian authorities said yesterday that the daily death toll from the virus was 602, bringing the total to 6,077.

The daily figure is the lowest increase since Thursday.

Gazette Desk
Gazette.ie is the daily legal news site of the Law Society of Ireland