1st time as camp nurse and have a few questions.

  1. I will be working as a camp nurse starting the week after next and I am very excited! I'm working June 14th-July 29th. My usual job is as a school LVN so I needed to do something to earn an income during summer break!

    I will be living at the camp and there is one other nurse who I'll be splitting work days with. Room, board, and food are all provided at no expense to me. From what it sounds like, the other nurse and I will split the days in half or something between the two of us, and everyone at camp has one day off per week. I think there will be about 60 kids if I remember correctly.

    What is the usual compensation (ballpark) for a camp nurse for this duration? Will there be a huge difference between the usual duties I expect at my school job? (First aid, diabetes, medication, asthma, allergies, etc) I was told that the camp has someone trained to handle sports injuries, so i don't think I'll be seeing many of those.
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  2. 20 Comments

  3. by   sailornurse
    Did you get a job description? I was a camp nurse at a Girl Scout camp when my daughter was a a Brownie. Was so glad I had ER background and was new FNP. I guess it depends on the population that attends the camp. I was shocked at how many young girls were on anti depressants. And then the moms that stopped the adhd Meds for the summer! Had to call one mom to come pick up her child as this unhappy little girl cried 24 hours per day. Told mom they get up at 7am and activities go till 10 pm non stop with some breaks built in after meals. Worst thing had camper go into status asthmaticus. This girl was wheezing day of arrival & mom refused to come get her and did not send her nebulizer. 3 days later I call her to tell her she can pick up her kid in the Er of the closest hospital 70 miles from the camp. Many parents stop allergy/asthma Meds then send the girls to camp in the mountains to ride horses! Hay the girls feed the horses & also have to brush them after riding& clean the tack.
  4. by   Scrubs_n_sirens
    The worse thing for me as a camp "nurse" as an EMT was trying to give so many Girl Scouts their scheduled medications every day, several times a day, by myself. It was an ordeal every morning, haha.

    When I started, I had no standing SOPs. I was the only health care provider on camp. Very stressful trying to do intake for 150 girls the first day every week, get their medication regimes transcribed, review for food allergies for the kitchen staff, and try to do head and foot checks.

    Those were my responsibilities. And my administration frowned on using the van to take people to the hospital when I thought they needed to go. *sigh*

    As an EMT doing the camp nurse position, I received 500$ a pay period (two weeks) with room, board, and food. And from reviewing positions for camp RNs in my area, that was obviously on the low end. I would assume an LVN would make more than that and an RN more so.
  5. by   sailornurse
    Yeah the Med pass for 200 campers per week was cumbersome but having 25 years Med surge experience really helped me out. I had the unit leaders bring the campers to the nurses cabin for Meds before each meal & at bedtime. Took some organizing my Mars and had to remind unit leaders to bring them before meals not after or I missed my meal! And to remind them to use rescue albuterol before exercise! I think they paid me $600 a week and my daughter got to go to camp and ride horses for half the price of regular tuition but then they were paying me for being an ER nurse and having my nurse practitioner license in the state. Heck I got the position at the last minute. The nurse they had hired had an emergency and left, so they would've had to cancel three weeks of camp until I came along. I would of volunteered until they offered to pay me, just so that my daughter could have the experience of going to camp & learn to ride a horse. I went back the following year, she rode horses all three weeks! And then they sold the Camp.
    Last edit by sailornurse on Jun 2, '16
  6. by   Scrubs_n_sirens
    I worked with a bunch of teenage counsellors. They had no respect for me to bring campers on time. It wasn't abnormal for me to miss meals because of the counsellors inconsiderteness.
  7. by   Alex Egan
    The average salary for a camp nurse is generally $50-$100 per day. Some camps pay more but not many.

    i don't think your gonna find a vast difference between your school job and camp except you generally don't get to send them home. Fever, vomiting, skin infection they are all yours to arrange treatment for transport to the appointment, chase for meds and treatment. Diabetics guess who gets to do the 2AM BGL if the're low at bedtime, hint it's not mom.

    Also admistrative support can be lackluster at times, even more so than in the public sector. Parents can't just go to another school next year because you made them mad, but they sure can leave camp so the boss has a lot of incentives to kiss parent butt.
  8. by   bebbercorn
    They only came to see me for the gatorade :-(
  9. by   Alex Egan
    Quote from bebbercorn
    They only came to see me for the gatorade :-(
    rookie mistake. Always water down your Gatorade.
  10. by   NurseAngela05
    Yes, I got the description and it seems like I wont experience too much of a difference (besides not being able to send them home or to the hospital if it's a serious issue) I just wanted to hear some real life feedback! Thanks for your reply, I hope I don't run into any stopped meds....yikes
  11. by   Jedrnurse
    Quote from Scrubs_n_sirens
    The worse thing for me as a camp "nurse" as an EMT was trying to give so many Girl Scouts their scheduled medications every day, several times a day, by myself. It was an ordeal every morning, haha.

    When I started, I had no standing SOPs. I was the only health care provider on camp. Very stressful trying to do intake for 150 girls the first day every week, get their medication regimes transcribed, review for food allergies for the kitchen staff, and try to do head and foot checks.

    Those were my responsibilities. And my administration frowned on using the van to take people to the hospital when I thought they needed to go. *sigh*

    As an EMT doing the camp nurse position, I received 500$ a pay period (two weeks) with room, board, and food. And from reviewing positions for camp RNs in my area, that was obviously on the low end. I would assume an LVN would make more than that and an RN more so.
    Curious- why and for what do you do routine foot checks?
  12. by   NurseAngela05
    I will be arriving to camp the same day as the kids, so I hope everything is pretty much in place, including orders.. The counselors arrive at camp the week before. Maybe they should do that with nurses as well. Especially with so many kids! I think I will have 60-100 per session but I dont recall exactly how many. I guess I will find out the week after next!


    Quote from Scrubs_n_sirens
    The worse thing for me as a camp "nurse" as an EMT was trying to give so many Girl Scouts their scheduled medications every day, several times a day, by myself. It was an ordeal every morning, haha.


    When I started, I had no standing SOPs. I was the only health care provider on camp. Very stressful trying to do intake for 150 girls the first day every week, get their medication regimes transcribed, review for food allergies for the kitchen staff, and try to do head and foot checks.


    Those were my responsibilities. And my administration frowned on using the van to take people to the hospital when I thought they needed to go. *sigh*


    As an EMT doing the camp nurse position, I received 500$ a pay period (two weeks) with room, board, and food. And from reviewing positions for camp RNs in my area, that was obviously on the low end. I would assume an LVN would make more than that and an RN more so.
  13. by   NurseAngela05
    Thanks so much for your reply. I guess I got lucky in the payment department! I'm hoping the other nurse and I will take turns being on-call for the night shift. This is going to be a very interesting summer!!!!! You make a good point about administration, I didn't think of it that way. I will begin mentally preparing myself now.


    Quote from Alex Egan
    The average salary for a camp nurse is generally $50-$100 per day. Some camps pay more but not many.


    i don't think your gonna find a vast difference between your school job and camp except you generally don't get to send them home. Fever, vomiting, skin infection they are all yours to arrange treatment for transport to the appointment, chase for meds and treatment. Diabetics guess who gets to do the 2AM BGL if the're low at bedtime, hint it's not mom.


    Also admistrative support can be lackluster at times, even more so than in the public sector. Parents can't just go to another school next year because you made them mad, but they sure can leave camp so the boss has a lot of incentives to kiss parent butt.
  14. by   Alex Egan
    Where is your camp at and approximately what is your salary.

    Not it to be rude. But the fact is many camps get away with low balling nurses because it's hard to know that the industry standard is for many areas.

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