Illinois Latest State To Consider Hidden Cameras In Nursing Homes

According to this story in the Fiscal Times Illinois Atty. Gen. Lisa Madigan has heard enough elder abuse nightmare stories that she is drafting legislation will be introduced in 2015 that will allow Illinois nursing home residents and their families to put cameras in their rooms to help protect them.

“Residents and family members should have the option, for their own peace of mind, to monitor what is taking place,” said Madigan. “If something goes wrong, you can see what actually happened.”

Four other states -New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas and Washington-allow residents to maintain cameras in their rooms. In Maryland, cameras can be placed in a resident’s room, but only if the facility permits them, according to state guidelines.

While no one keeps data on the total number of allegations of abuse or neglect in nursing homes, an August report by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Inspector General’s office found that 85 percent of nursing facilities reported at least one such allegation to the agency in 2012. It estimated that about 60,000 allegations involved staffers abusing or neglecting residents.

About 1.5 million people reside in nearly 16,000 nursing homes nationwide at any given time.

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