Nursing Home Abuse has been a big issue in the last 10 years. A new bill signed into law in Louisiana on May 31st now allows the family (or guardians) of individuals in nursing homes to install cameras in their rooms. The consent of the nursing home, as well as anyone the patient is sharing their room with, would be required, as well as for the family to pay for costs of installation and upkeep. Additionally, the nursing home would be required to disclose the procedures to install the cameras.
The bill has faced some opposition from the Louisiana Nursing Home Association, on the grounds of potential risks to privacy and safety with the use of live video feed into a patient’s room. However, the bill was also widely supported by families across the state, both to address concerns of distance as well as potential neglect or abuse from the staff.
So what does this mean? Hopefully, it will mean a decrease in nursing home abuse or neglect, and better connection with elderly family members. This past year, the state of Louisiana ranked among the lowest in the country for long-term elderly care (40th). This has included many allegations concerning abuse of disabled elderly in nursing homes, neglect of care or diagnosis, and general improper treatment. The installation of a camera may be a large step towards preventing these injustices. Hidden camera footage has documented this problem for years in nursing homes, but previously the use of these cameras has been not legally protected. Consent from the nursing home is still required for this new law, but perhaps it might be a successful way to stop the abuse preemptively, rather than pressing charges after the fact.
Is this a step forward for care of our elderly, or a potential risk to privacy? Leave your thoughts and comments below! McGinty Law Firm will represent you in cases of medical malpractice, so if you or a loved one has experienced nursing home abuse or neglect, call us today at 504-581-2222 for a free consultation.