Security cameras may be allowed in assisted living facility rooms depending on the state you live in. Some nursing homes have verbiage in their admission forms that prohibit all cameras and impose regulations and requirements for their use.
Concerns over nursing home abuse and neglect have prompted states across the country to pass laws allowing private cameras in nursing homes. As of 2022, there are ten states that allow private cameras which include:
- New Mexico
The details of surveillance cameras differ from state to state. There may be certain protocols you have to follow in order to install a camera. If you are considering installing a camera in a loved one’s nursing home room, you should contact an attorney to discuss the legal and practical implications. Many nursing homes fear cameras invade the privacy of staff members and other residents; however, these cameras provide an extra layer of security for family members who may be afraid of nursing home abuse.
Pros and cons of having cameras in nursing homes
While cameras provide extra comfort, they can also catch abusers red-handed. Examples of cases where a camera exposed nursing home abuse include:
- In 2012, a hidden camera caught two nursing home staff members suffocating an 98-year-old resident in Oklahoma. As a result, Oklahoma legally allows families to install cameras in nursing homes.
- In 2019, the family of an 89-year-old man noticed bruises, weight loss and cuts on their father. His son hid a camera in his father’s alarm clock stationed next to his bed in his Michigan nursing home. More than 100 secretly recorded video clips of abuse and neglect over the course of just two days.
- In October 2022, two staff members at a Texas nursing home abused an 86-year-old man. The nursing home told family members that the man fell out of his bed; however, the family installed a camera in his room due to previous incidents with the staff at the nursing home facility.
Some nursing homes prohibit the installation of cameras in residents’ rooms due to privacy and safety concerns.
- Roommates: Not all nursing home facilities have individual rooms for each resident. Nursing home cameras intended to monitor a resident could also catch roommates while they change or bathe.
- The staff: Cameras may increase staff resentment and lead to false accusation, according to data from the Annals of Long-Term Care. For example, if a camera catches a staff member moving a resident’s object, it may appear they stole it when they actually moved it out of the peripheral of the screen.
- The resident: Some seniors may not want cameras installed in their rooms. Depending where it’s set up, it could be an invasion of privacy as they change, bathe and more.
If you are unsure what to do, we recommend that you contact the Dinizulu Law Group for legal advice. If you suspect abuse and would like advice on the best ways to move forward, our team of skilled nursing home abuse lawyers can help protect your loved one from further harm.
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