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Do You Support Allowing Recording in Assisted-Living Facilities?

Should you be allowed to place hidden cameras in nursing homes?

by Countable | Updated on 1.9.19

What’s the story?

  • Laws and regulations that affect long-term care facilities are being reviewed after a woman in a vegetative stage gave birth to a child on December 29th in a Phoenix assisted-living home.
  • At least six states - Illinois, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas, and Washington - have passed laws permitting families to install a camera in an assisted-living facility if the resident and resident’s roommate(s) agree to it.  
  • Some nursing homes, however, have language in their admission contracts that ban cameras or limit their use.

What are both sides saying?

  • Louisiana’s “granny-cam” law just went into effect on the first of the year. State Sen. Sharon Hewitt said it was a safety move.
"Most of us have loved ones that have been in nursing homes. We have all experienced that question of the quality of care, especially when you can't be there all the time. Particularly for folks who live far away from their loved ones, this is going to give them that ability to make a better judgment on the quality of care they are giving."
  • Assisted-living industry groups have voiced their concerns over camera-related regulations. In June, New Jersey announced it would loan hidden cameras to family members who suspect their loved one is being mistreated in a long-term care facility. Jon Dolan, president and CEO of the Health Care Association of New Jersey, pushed back against the proposal.
  • “Now, if this were done on a recording device with the sanctioning of law enforcement in a probable cause situation and we needed to keep it confidential, I would fully advise my facilities to participate in such an investigation,” Dolan said.
“But the idea that we’re just going to give these cameras out to people and let them do whatever they want with them because the Attorney General says so? I don’t think so.”
  • Dolan said families should work with the nursing homes and assisted-living facilities if possible.
“Families and facilities can come together to conduct proper investigations and address complaints. And if they need to be surreptitious, I think we need to delineate some rules and regulations, so that if somebody is sneaking around with a camera, we know we’re not filming a roommate inappropriately.”

What do you think?

Do more states need to introduce “granny cam” laws? Should you be allowed to record your family members living in a nursing home or assisted-care facility? Take action and tell your reps, then share your thoughts below.

—Josh Herman

(Photo Credit: iStockphoto.com / Rawpixel)

Countable

Written by Countable

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(260)
  • Steve
    Voted Maybe
    01/09/2019
    ···

    Don't make them hidden cameras. Make them so everyone knows they are there, staff, patients, families and law enforcement.

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  • Milan
    Voted Yes
    01/09/2019
    ···

    I’ve had family in assisted living for over 5 years - the rotating slew of temporary workers is astounding and they are there for the paycheck with No compassion for the elderly vulnerable and dependent. It is extremely important to have recording choices.

    Like (53)
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  • Judy
    01/09/2019
    ···

    Absolutely! People behave differently when they know they are being monitored and recorded!

    Like (28)
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  • Cynthia
    Voted No
    01/10/2019
    ···

    They don’t need to record, all they need is tv monitoring on those rooms that need it. No need to record conversations.

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  • BlueSphere
    Voted Yes
    01/09/2019
    ···

    Yes, I support the use of cameras (hidden and/or visible) at the request of family members. Residents at assisted living and other care homes are really vulnerable, especially those who are bedridden or unable to speak up for themselves. I worked in a care home, very briefly, many years ago. I quit 2 nights after management left me solely responsible for the welfare of 20 residents whom I was unqualified to take care of. I felt sorry for leaving because the men and women I met were so lovely, and terribly lonely. However, I did not have the skills or knowledge to know what to do in an emergency and I just couldn’t risk their well-being. Anyway, yes, I support the use of cameras to make sure our elderly are receiving the best care. And for those who work in these places and ARE qualified, thank you! You are unsung heroes who deserve so much recognition for all you do to make sure our elderly are taken care of with love and respect.

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  • all.in.moderation
    Voted Maybe
    01/09/2019
    ···

    I absolutely support implementing protections for people in long-term care facilities, especially as I have family that will likely end up in such a place one day. Of course I would want to ensure that they’re getting the best care possible—I also, however, hold hesitations over issues of privacy, given where such cameras would be. But at the same time, I understand the need for accountability and ways to ensure patient safety against abusive staff, since many of these patients have no means of protecting themselves or reporting abuse (or are even not believed when they do report it). So currently, I’m quite torn on this one.

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  • JTJ
    01/09/2019
    ···

    This is a state issue, no reason to discuss it here.

    Like (11)
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  • Jeanne
    Voted No
    01/10/2019
    ···

    Massive HIPPA violation.

    Like (1)
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  • Dennis
    Voted Yes
    01/10/2019
    ···

    My mother-in-Law passed away after while she was in the nursing home suffering from Alzheimer’s Disease. Her bed was left with the rails down and my mother-in-law fell from the bed onto the tiled floor. She broke her hip and had to be rushed to the hospital for surgery. She didn’t understand what had happened to her except the immense pain she was in. The surgery went well, but her recovery was impaired by her age and the advancement of the disease. We found a private home a few blocks from our home that took in one to two seniors recovering. However, she was unable to recover and died a few weeks later. We sued the nursing home and won the case. I support the family’s right to install a security monitor that has motion detection. Although I have not checked out what products are available, The smart home security market is growing and it is now possible to link a security cam into the room that will notify you of any motion around the patient. This will give the family real time access with recording capabilities. After my aunt passed away, her husband was left alone in his home in California. His son gave his father an Apple iPad and set it up in the room the father spent most of his time, and showed his father how to launch the only app appearing on the iPad that launched the FaceTime or Skype feature to connect and see his father from South Carolina. It helped his father through periods of loss and loneliness and it created a link that his father brought his father into his South Carolina home life. My cousin’s wife left the iPad connected via WiFi to the father-in-law which comforted his father. Within a few years later, the father was unable to live alone and his son moved him to South Carolina to live with the son’s family. Leaving a loved on in nursing care (whether it is for a convalescent period or long term) creates a sense of depression and fear. Having a connection to the immediate family is important especially while family loved ones are growing accustom to living in nursing care. Had I had the technology in 2001 we may have been able to avoid the fall that shortened my mother-in-law’s life. IMO, if nursing homes understand that the patient’s family is watching and the care they receive and this helps improve the quality of care. I hate the thought of having to inspect the quality of service my loved one receives. We expect our loved ones to be treated with respect and the quality of care we expect for our family.

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  • Susan
    Voted Yes
    01/10/2019
    ···

    Having worked for attorneys dealing with malpractice and improper treatment by nursing home employees, I would encourage families to ensure there are cameras placed in their loved ones’ rooms.

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  • Riley
    Voted Yes
    01/10/2019
    ···

    I've heard too many horror stories about nurses stealing from our elders. I am perfectly fine with families doing this to watch after their loved ones. God forbid my family members end up in homes, I would at least like to make sure they aren't taken advantage of.

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  • Jeffrey
    Voted Yes
    01/09/2019
    ···

    In all assisted living/long term nursing homes and facilities for mentally challenged should have cameras everywhere except directly in the restrooms, and in cases like that there should be two people at all times. My brother is mentally handicapped and if he was in a home and I found out something bad happened I would use every course of action due under law to right it

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  • Nancy
    Voted Yes
    01/10/2019
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    As a registered nurse, I support this direction.

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  • Sherri
    Voted Yes
    01/10/2019
    ···

    These places only get checked up on in Arizona ,maybe once every two years and the get a three mo. Time frame to get the home in order . We need cameras in these places where our loved ones are there in compromised helth and can not speak up on there own defence

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  • Anne
    Voted Yes
    01/10/2019
    ···

    My grandmother was in assisted living in a nice place and she was completely neglected. I know of others who have said the same. Grannie cams are necessary due to the temporary workers in the facilities.

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  • Genie
    Voted Yes
    01/10/2019
    ···

    I honestly believe cameras should be mandatory, we already know the amount of abuse and neglect that goes on in nursing homes. I feel the same way about special needs classrooms, life skill centers and daycare centers. Sometimes cameras Are the only voice these adults and children have!

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  • Mark
    Voted Yes
    01/10/2019
    ···

    From personal experience in the hospice industry - I know that cameras in the rooms are very helpful.

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  • Shonda
    Voted Yes
    01/09/2019
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    With the past treatment of our Elders the crimes of some are unimaginable! Police wear body cams maybe our elders & their families need peace of mind their loved ones are being cared for properly.

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  • RjGoodman
    Voted Yes
    01/09/2019
    ···

    Yes, unfortunately, there are many times when a patient was abused and beaten by their caregivers. The family should be allowed to record the spaces where their loved one inhabits.

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  • BacktotheRight
    Voted Yes
    01/09/2019
    ···

    Of course the family should be able record their loved ones in case the person isn’t able to explain things that happen to them when there’s no family around.

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  • Keri
    Voted Yes
    01/09/2019
    ···

    Too many things happened to our older Citizens in these places I think it could make care even better

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  • Rainelle
    Voted Yes
    01/10/2019
    ···

    Healthcare workers should have nothing to hide.

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