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Question DetailsAsked on 8/4/2014

can i legaly put a ip camera in my sons hospital room so i can monitor him when im not there?

my son was in a accident and has bin in a few deferent hospitals for the last 9 months. TBI, Traumatic Brain Injury, he has had several set backs. He is unable to communicate ( he cant talk) he is dependent on his mother and my shelf to recognize when he is in pain or any thing else, the nurses do not all way see this as they are coming and going. We sit with him almost around the clock but we do get tiered . it would be most comforting to be able to monitor him with a camera over the internet when we are not with him . I would only have the camera viewing him in his hospital bed and not the entire room. we live 3 hours from the hospital.

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1 Answer


I sympathise with you, but there are som epractical and legal considerations you need to address:

1) obviously depends on the state you live in - also makes a difference (federal law) as the viewing would be done with a medium controlled by federal regulations (the internet)

2) generally only if you are parent or legal guardian or Conservator of the Person, and might still require a court order authorizing it - and you would need to take measures to make sure it is secure,not wide-open WiFi accessible to anyone.

3) most hospitals prohibit personal electronic devices to avoid interference with medical equipment, so would need their approval and assistance with setup/internet link. And they might not have the means for a continuous-on internet link in the room, or want to commit that much bandwidth for full-time video monitoring, so might take an installation by a security company with a wireless link.

4) would need a written warning notice be posted on the door that all activities in that room are being monitored by camera and microphone and being taped, as under wiretap laws you cannot tape someone in a room (at least with audio, and in some states at all) without their knowledge

5) I presume you have an attorney on this case if as bad as it sounds - so ask him/her for guidance

6) consider that if you do this, how receptive is hospital going to be to you calling the nurses station frequently for them to check on him because you saw something - could make them very defensive very fast. And are all staff and doctors going to go along with being filmed while in the room.

7) if done, make sure system is moveable in case he has to be moved to another hospital, so it could be relocated and set up there is applicable

8) first consider with your attorney the potential legal consequences - if you say you need video monitoring to keep track of his condition because you live 3 hours away, there is a possibility the state or the hospital may turn that against you and say you are not fit to manage his care and they might seek a court order to have a local guardian or conservator appointed - who would overrule your wishes,so take care. Some hospitals (and social welfare agencies) are doing some absolutely draconian things these days.

Answered 6 years ago by LCD

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