The Care Quality Commission plans to put secret cameras in care homes.

Neglect or abuse in Care and Nursing homes is an ongoing issue and every week seems to reveal a new case. So it’s to be welcomed that the CQC, the NHS Regulator, has launched a public consultation on their proposal to put cameras in to care and nursing homes.

David Prior, chairman of the CQC, said the risks and consequences of abuse were so great they could outweigh privacy concerns.

It is likely that covert surveillance would at first only take place where there was evidence or suspicion of mistreatment but Prior added “There is a massive risk and it is incumbent on us to have as many sources of information as we can get”.

“We have to use every power we can to try to protect people and if we felt that that (Covert surveillance) was a way in which we could get to the truth, then we would unquestionably use it.

“Anything that can give families assurance that their loved ones are being cared for properly has got to be welcomed. So I think we will do anything short of breaking the law.”

Please take the time to look out for the consultation and make your views known.

However the most important thing to remember is that you can’t leave things to the authorities. You must be vigilant and take action if you suspect neglect or abuse to your friend or relative. There has been more than one case of concerned people installing secret camera’s and getting compelling evidence of abuse only to find that the home and even the CQC failed to follow up on the evidence.

Pursuing the suspected abuse or neglect of your loved one in a care home can be difficult, lonely and worrying. I strongly recommend you speak to an advisor such as the Citizens advice bureau or a specialist qualified solicitor who should be able to give you free advice and guide you through the challenging process.