Nursing Home Cameras: Protecting The Vulnerable and Ethical Dilemmas

About this sample

About this sample


Words: 1307 |

Pages: 3|

7 min read

Published: Aug 30, 2022

Words: 1307|Pages: 3|7 min read

Published: Aug 30, 2022

Table of contents

  1. Deontology theory
  2. Psychological Approach to Ethical Decision Making
  3. Conclusion
  4. References

In today's world, the trend of sending the elderly to nursing homes is very common among society. The reason behind this can be difficulties to take care of the elderly especially when they have health problems. However, there exists an ethical dilemma that appears in nursing homes about privacy against safety regarding installing cameras in the patient room. Therefore, a discussion surrounding ethical dilemmas in the nursing home using consequences theory, deontology theory and a psychological approach to ethical decision-making will be carried out in this report.

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Definition of Utilitarianism is a moral theory that identifies right and wrong by focusing on results. This is a form of consequentialism that represents the best decision yields the greatest net benefits to society. The research states that there are 5000000 elders being abused each year. It is believed that one in every ten-elderly people over the age of 60 is being abused. According to the National Center for Victims of Crime, 14% of self-reported elder abuses are neglect, 60% are verbal and 5% to 10% are physical. The advantage of installing surveillance cameras in resident rooms is the employees will work more efficiently and hardworking because there will be held accountable for their actions. In June 2018, there was a case saying that an elderly woman in Victoria is being sexually assaulted by an aged care provider. Jessie Jackson, 89, which was laying in her recline at Bupa Woodend and was attacked by a male resident in a regional center north of Melbourne. However, the male resident was interrupted by a staff member who raised the alarm during the attack. Respondents to the study indicated potential preferences of cameras, especially the ability to deter abuse and to use by the offices themselves to information about individual inhabitants' needs as well as resources that help employees improve their work. The government said the technology would detect unreasonable clamor and movement, setting off a caution to the reviewer and they can immediately check the video to see if an incident has occurred. In this scenario, the greatest benefit to society is having the surveillance camera implemented in the room because the end result will reduce abuse towards elderly people. Therefore, this will give the stakeholders such as family members and the relatives of the elderly, workers, and the old people a sense of security. For example, if the worker is treating the elderly poor, the camera will record their activities, and this will result in them in getting fired due to their lack of diligence. The camera footage will also provide evidence for legal restriction if abusive activities happen, this also gives potential criminal pressure when they decide to commit abusive activities. Ultimately, the camera footage provides strong evidence to the victims and relatives toward the abusive workers when take legal action.

Deontology theory

In deontological morals, an activity is viewed as ethically great on account of some attribute of the activity itself, not on the grounds that the result of the activity is great and the meaning of justice is the fairness in the protection of rights and punishment of wrongs. Although all legal systems are designed to uphold this ideal by implementing land laws fairly and appropriately, there may be unfair laws. The case expressed that the utilization of surveillance cameras in inhabitant rooms is regular to such an extent that a few states have passed laws to support facilities and families to explore the legal issues. So far, seven states, including Washington, have passed laws permitting the arrangement of surveillance cameras in the rooms of nursing home residents. In deontology theory, there are three types of rules which are the Golden rule, Kant's rule, and Rawls's rule. The discussion will be surrounded on the Golden rule and Kant's rule. The Golden rule describes doing it to others like what you want others to do to you. From a reasonable point of view, having the camera in the room should be the course of action. Ultimately, this approach can have long-term positive effects as when the camera installation spread across the nursing houses in the country for the current and the coming elderly generation. Kant's morals are composed around the thought of an “categorical imperative,” which is a widespread moral standard expressing that one ought to consistently regard the humanity in others and that one should just act as per decisions that could hold for everybody. Based on this rule, their behavior is unethical based on the categorical imperative. Putting the camera in the room is in breach of the old people's privacy. Moreover, if putting the camera in the rooms becomes a universal law, the elderly will no longer have their right to have privacy.

Psychological Approach to Ethical Decision Making

Ethical awareness includes perceiving the moral implication of all nursing activities, and it is an initial phase in moral action. A person is ethically aware if he or she realizes that a problem he/she experiences incorporates an ethical problem. A person can make correct and ethical decisions only when they are aware of ethical issues. Moreover, that individual can distinguish the potential impacts of an issue on the advantages, wants, and welfare of every related party. Ethical awareness includes perceiving that each nursing activity can possibly affect the patient, even routine daily actions. Having the surveillance camera, it will make the upper-level manager to know what the care workers have done to the elderly. They can have a training program to their employees. Furthermore, ethical judgment is thinking about the potential activities in the circumstance and making a decision about which behavior is more ethical. One significant area for moral judgment is moral disengagement which implies the procedure by which an individual persuades him or herself that moral guidelines don't concern him or her within a specific circumstance or context. The employees distance themselves from the usual ethical behavior. For example, when an employee is only given 30 minutes to get 3 old people ready for breakfast, the dilemma is to either get the old people ready on time but not doing a proper job in terms of their well-being or not meet the deadline but taking precaution when it’s come getting them ready. With the camera installed, this kind of moral disengagement can be expected to decrease.

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In a nutshell, based on my arguments, installing a camera in the room is more suggestible. From the perspective of consequences theory, deontology theory, and a psychological approach to ethical decision-making, the camera will protect the elderly from being harmed. Another framework that I considered is the ripple effect. A Ripple effect is a situation in which one event produces effects that spread and produce further effects. If we install cameras in the resident room, their children will feel safe to put them in the nursing home. It will also have a ripple effect and cumulative causation towards other communities where abuse is common such as special needs schools and orphanage houses.


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  2. Briggs, C., & Slessor, C. (2019). CCTV cameras to be used in aged care facilities in 'groundbreaking' Australian-first trial. Retrieved 18 November 2019, from
  3. Fieser, J., & Dowden, B. (2019). Kant, Immanuel | Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Retrieved 21 November 2019, from
  4. Miliken, A. (2018). Ethical Awareness: What It Is and Why It Matters. Retrieved 21 November 2019, from
  5. National Council on Aging. (n.d.). Elder Abuse Facts. Retrieved from
  6. Parwani, N. (2009). deontological ethics | Definition, Meaning, Examples, & Facts. Retrieved 21 November 2019, from
  7. Türegün, N. (2018). Ethical Awareness, Ethical Decision Making, and Transparency: A Study on Turkish CPAs in Istanbul. Accounting From A Cross-Cultural Perspective. doi: 10.5772/intechopen.76867
  8. 6 Reason You Should Send Your Parents to Nursing Home | Noble Care Malaysia. (2017). Retrieved 7 November 2019, from
  9. Eckart, K. (2019). Security cameras in nursing homes aim to protect the vulnerable but present ethical dilemmas. Retrieved 23 November 2019, from
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Nursing Home Cameras: Protecting the Vulnerable and Ethical Dilemmas. (2022, August 30). GradesFixer. Retrieved July 15, 2024, from
“Nursing Home Cameras: Protecting the Vulnerable and Ethical Dilemmas.” GradesFixer, 30 Aug. 2022,
Nursing Home Cameras: Protecting the Vulnerable and Ethical Dilemmas. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 15 Jul. 2024].
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