Turning to security camera surveillance as a way to protect elderly relatives probably never crossed the minds of most families 10 years ago. Today, the practice is almost routine.
Every 10 seconds another baby boomer reaches retirement age. That growing elderly population, along with an entirely new set of threats facing elderly family members, has made increased attention to personal safety a necessity for sons, daughters and caregivers of elderly family members.
For post-retirement parents and family members with the extra challenges of chronic illness, Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, the threats are even more prevalent, whether care is given at home or in a nursing home. For them, security camera surveillance can add an extra layer of safety and security.
When the Unthinkable Happens
A recent news article told the story of three men who knocked on the door of an elderly woman’s condo and talked the dementia sufferer into going with them to several local retail stores.
Unaware of what was happening, the woman obliged, and by the end of the day the men had persuaded her to apply for credit accounts in each of the stores. Then the men went on a shopping spree that ended up costing the woman more than $10,000.
When the bills started arriving, worried family members were only able to piece together the details of what happened by using security camera surveillance video from the stores where the accounts had been opened.
The story both highlighted the vulnerability of many senior citizens, as well as the value of having the safety net of security surveillance videos.
Elderly Facing Multiple Risks
The potential for health emergencies, elder abuse, stolen prescriptions, identity theft and general mistreatment or under attention has given rise to a new generation of family members turning to security camera surveillance as a solution for ensuring the health and security of their loved ones.
The National Research Council Panel to Review Risk and Prevalence of Elder Abuse estimates that between 2% and 10% of seniors in nursing homes have been victims of abuse or theft.
Being able to keep an eye on loved ones via camera feeds has given concerned family members both peace of mind and the ability to maintain work schedules while still providing the needed attention.
In-Home or Care Center Situations
An at-home security camera surveillance system installation can provide peace of mind when family members want to feel security in their part-time, in-home caregiver’s service. An in-home system can also alert family members with remote monitoring capabilities to health emergencies with ample time to respond.
These in-home systems also allow family members more information in the event of an ill or infirm relative who wanders off or leaves the premises.
Before installing a security camera surveillance system in an elderly relative’s room in a care facility, you’ll want to first be sure you’ve reviewed any contracts and spoken with an administrator first.
In some states, it’s legal to possess a camera that’s in personal belongings that stay with the elderly person, such as a stuffed animal, pen or wristwatch.
Also, some states, such as Texas, have already passed legislation that allows these “granny cams.”
When in doubt, be sure to ask someone in a position of authority in any care center you’ve contracted with.
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