LAW WOULD ALLOW NURSING HOME SURVEILLANCE CAMERAS

CHICAGO (WLS) – Ten months after an ABC7 I-Team investigation of nursing home abuse, legislation was introduced in Springfield Friday that would help family members who want to keep closer watch on their loves ones.

Under the proposal, surveillance cameras could be put in the rooms of nursing home patients.

In an age when cameras are everywhere, they are not in Illinois nursing homes, but that would change under legislation proposed Friday by North Side Chicago State Representative Greg Harris.

He and family members of nursing home residents say that surveillance cameras would help keep elderly patients safe and might improve the state’s nursing home care ranking, which is near the bottom nationally.

“Contusions on the head. Broken hip, hospitalizations. Every single symptom of nursing home abuse, she endured,” said Mary Howard.

Howard’s grandmother entered a west suburban nursing home with dementia. Annie Herron’s loved ones moved her out that facility after continuously finding her injured.

“To see her in the position she was in was really hard,” said granddaughter Audrey Saunders.

Herron’s family thinks cameras in their grandmother’s room would have answered questions about her care.

“Cameras don’t lie,” Howard said.

The latest Department of Public Health report cites 106 Illinois nursing home residents were victims of theft, abuse and neglect.

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