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Protecting Resident Privacy and Prohibiting Mental Abuse Related to Photographs and Audio/Visual Recordings by Nursing Home Staff

August 2016


Recent media reports have highlighted occurrences of nursing home staff taking unauthorized photographs or video recordings of nursing home residents, sometimes in compromised positions. The photographs are then posted on social media networks, or sent through multimedia messages.

Nursing homes must establish an environment that is as homelike as possible and includes a culture and environment that treats each resident with respect and dignity. Treating a nursing home resident in any manner that does not uphold a resident’s sense of self-worth and individuality dehumanizes the resident and creates an environment that perpetuates a disrespectful and/or potentially abusive attitude towards the resident(s). Federal nursing home regulations require that each nursing home provides care and services in a person-centered environment in which all individuals are treated as human beings.

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