[UPDATE on May 17 at 5:50 p.m]: A bill that would allow cameras inside nursing homes in Missouri has passed the legislature and has been sent to the desk of Gov. Mike Parson.

(KMOV.com) - Some local nursing homes have been ground zero for the coronavirus with family members very worried about their loved ones.

That’s exactly why advocates are pushing to allow cameras inside nursing homes.

READ: News 4 Investigates: Would cameras in nursing homes prevent abuse, neglect?

Wednesday, lawmakers in Jefferson City will have a hearing on whether to allow cameras inside nursing homes. Some people say its been a long time coming.

“It’s important that we take care of our nursing home residents in all times, but really in this time,” said Marjorie Moore with VOYCE.

She says the coronavirus crisis has highlighted the need for cameras in nursing homes.

News 4 Investigates has been tracking instance of abuse and neglect in some nursing homes for years.

With homes currently on lockdown, families are even more worried they can’t check in on their loved ones.

“It’s a possibility that a person could be dropped and not picked up in a timely manner. There is a big possibility that call lights are not being answered in timely manners, dietary needs aren’t being met, things like that, and there is no one in there to monitor right now,” Moore said.

She’s worried seniors conditions will deteriorate because of lack of mobility or mental stimulation.

So called “granny cams” are already legal in Illinois. A bill to allow them in Missouri already made it through the State House of Representatives and just needs to pass the State Senate.

VOYCE has created a letter for people to sign to send to lawmakers.

It’s all an attempt, they say, to ensure seniors are getting the best care.

“It’s really important to have those cameras so families can really monitor that,” Moore said.

The nursing home industry has signed onto the bill. They would co-own the footage and both parties would have to agree before it’s released to anyone other than law enforcement.

If you want to sign the letter, you can find it here

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