SPRINGFIELD – Families of individuals who reside in facilities that care for dementia patients will have additional tools to prevent abuse of their loved one’s under a proposal by State Senator Terry Link (D-Indian Creek) that was signed into law on Friday.

Link’s new law – contained in Senate Bill 109 – allows for electronic monitoring in patient rooms in a building or wing of a building solely dedicated to dementia care.

“Dementia patients are especially susceptible to abuse or neglect at the hands of their caretakers,” Link said. “While we know most staff treat their patients with the utmost respect and dignity, allowing video monitoring equipment will serve as a deterrent to misconduct and offer peace of mind to family members.”

Link’s proposal builds off a 2015 law he passed that allowed for video and audio monitoring equipment in facilities for individuals with developmental disabilities or in long-term care facilities. The original law was passed after the Illinois Department of Public Health received multiple complaints about abuse, neglect and theft against residents.

“We must continue working to ensure that anyone who is susceptible to abuse or mistreatment is protected and cared for,” Link said.

Senate Bill 109 takes effect immediately.