Nursing homes are entrusted with the care of a loved one at one of the most vulnerable times in that person’s life. Therefore, the families of nursing home residents need to be able to trust the nursing home directors to properly care for and protect the resident. However, all too often, the care that residents receive is subpar. If a loved one has received abusive or negligent treatment in a nursing home, family members may be able to file a lawsuit to collect money damages for the pain and suffering that the abuse caused.
Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner is currently considering a bill that would allow video and audio monitoring devices to be installed in nursing homes. The bill has already been approved by the General Assembly. According to the Daily Herald, if Governor Rauner signs the bill into law, Illinois would become the fourth state in the US to allow recording devices in nursing homes.
Attorney General Lisa Madigan is among a group of the bill’s supporters who argue that these audio and video recordings would ensure greater protection for nursing home residents. Madigan argues that these recording devices would result in greater accountability, which would improve the quality of care that residents receive. This would give families peace of mind, knowing that their relatives are safe and healthy. Furthermore, in instances when the recording devices do not ensure improved quality of care, they would at the very least make it easier to prove cases of abuse and neglect.
However, opponents have also voiced their concerns regarding this potential new law. Opponents include nursing home administrators, who argue that it would be difficult for a resident to give proper consent to be recorded considering the devices would usually be installed by concerned family members, not by the resident. Furthermore, they raise concerns about resident privacy. To deal with these concerns, the Illinois legislature has included wording in the bill that would require resident and roommate consent before installation.
According to Madigan’s office, Illinois currently has more than 860 nursing homes with over 76,000 residents. That number is expected to increase as the state’s population continues to age. In 2013 alone, there were 5,000 complaints of abuse, neglect, or theft in Illinois nursing homes. 106 of those complaints were proven.
If your loved one has been the victim of nursing home neglect or abuse, please call 617-787-3700 now to speak with one of our expert Massachusetts nursing home abuse attorneys or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.