I very much expect the true situation in the UK is similar.
The Florida Agency of Health Care Administration believe the true figure is higher because families are unaware that abuse has occurred. Many nursing home patients are unable to communicate the abuse to their loved ones due to embarrassment, dementia, or fear of retribution.
Carol Daniel and John Butler, in an article entitled ‘Lawmaker Pushes for Cameras in Nursing Homes to Prevent Abuse’ (stlouis.cbslocal.com/2015), reported on ‘allegations of rape, physical and verbal abuse, and neglect that filled the pages of Missouri nursing home inspections. The investigation that spanned three years was carried out by the U.S. Department of Health and Human services’ Center for Medicare and Medicaid. A state lawmaker contends such abuse is still going on, and he may have a way to combat it. Missouri Rep. Andrew McDaniel has filed a bill to allow the families of nursing home residents to place a video recording device in their room. “You probably hear the horror stories of people following grandma and stuff like that – we don’t want that,” McDaniel says. “We want them people taken care of and hopefully we’ll get rid of them type of people. Other health-care workers, they’re doing their job, they have nothing to worry about.” McDaniel says families have told him of cases of some patients developing bedsores from being left to sit in their own fecal matter.
The Missouri Association of Nursing Home Administrators declined to comment.
Families across America, driven by suspecting abuse or neglect, have turned to hidden cameras, better known as granny cams to identify and record abuse. Not only are elderly patient families resorting to technology to capture evidence, facility managers and law enforcement officials across the country are doing so as well. In addition to recording abuse, the use of video has captured caregivers stealing money, prescription drugs along with violation of appropriate behavior between caregivers.
The laws regarding security cameras vary from state to state. While the public is pushing for legislation that will allow for cameras in a patient’s room, there is strong opposition from the nursing-home industry citing an increase in insurance costs and concerns with resident and employee privacy issues.
Texas, Maryland and New Mexico now have laws that allow nursing home residents or their families to install monitoring cameras in their room. About a dozen state legislatures have granny-cam legislation under consideration. Adopting this legislation will be a positive step towards the prevention of elderly abuse, while providing families access to real time video or recently stored footage.
It is proven that the use of surveillance cameras had deterred crime in public facilities such as shopping malls, hospitals, schools, government buildings, etc. as well as the home.
It is astounding that the same technology is not allowed to protect our most precious asset, our senior citizens.
Daniel and Butler recount the story of a ‘St. Louis-area woman who wishes to remain anonymous says she would have put a camera in her husband’s nursing home room had she known what she knows now – believing it would have saved his life. The woman’s husband died July 28, 2010. “It’s been that long and I still have a problem,” she says. Her husband of 52 years was abused, she says – something she saw first hand during a visit. “A foul odor preceded me opening the door and when I did, there was my husband sitting head down in a room of about 90 degree in temperature because someone had turned off the air,” the woman says, and closed the window. He was hospitalized with bed sores, dehydration, and had to have a blood transfusion.
As to privacy concerns, the woman says cameras are already everywhere in our lives, and anyone who objects to such devices in nursing homes has something to hide‘.
There is strong opposition from the nursing-home industry, who hide the shamless faces behind the mask of ethics. These are the the heavily indebted companies that governments allow to operate private nursing homes, and which cut the number of staff to the bone, and dole out workhouse standard food to their residents.
It is this they have to hide, as well as employing many people who frankly haven’t a caring bone in their body; those devils of care that can not find a job more in keeping with their callous nature, such as feeding Christians to lions.
Make audio-cameras compulsory in UK nursing homes and hospitals.
Nationalise all UK nursing homes.
Manage them from the local district hospital.
The hospital to run a audio-camera monitoring unit, with access by relatives to recordings of their loved ones.
Rotate staff between nursing homes and hospitals.
Instigate draconian punishments for negligent and unkind care.
lenin nightingale 2015