New Camp Nurse -

Specialties Camp


  • Specializes in Emergency, Home Health, Camp Nursing, Foster Youth.

Hello all,

I will be the Health Admin/RN on-site camp with a non-profit organization of about 150-200 campers (foster youth). Prior to this position I was a student RN aide within the organization in the health center, but the RN was new to the profession as well. 

any tips of how to organize my med admin, health backgrounds, staff education, and a packing list? 

I know the organization used camp docs but  resorted to paper MARs at camp. I’m thinking of bringing my laptop and a hotspot to document meds. Any suggestions?


7,735 Posts

Specializes in retired LTC.

Just me thinking this --- forget using your personal electronics for such work related tasks. Am thinking of privacy issues. Also maint. Talk to your Admin to see if they'll modernize. 

Specializes in Hospice.

As for med administration - I would recommend starting by looking at the previous system; both what worked and what didn't work instead of reinventing the wheel. State regs also need to be considered as well as scope of practice for those involved in med pass. For me, the most important thing was to figure out an organized system and making sure I had all the necessary supplies (water, applesauce, trash, spoons). If you have PRN's, have those available as well. Depending on what your set-up is, it may help to have another staff member wrangling campers so whoever is physically passing meds can do that safely/ efficiently. Also if it's organized, the campers will know what to expect so things go smoothly. Figure out logical times/ locations at camp. 

Staff Education - I made a power point several years ago covering common camp health concerns - including prevention and response (non-pharmacological interventions and when to see the nurse). I made it a "fun" powerpoint with corny/ campy headings for topics and lively graphics! I make a visit during staff training to present the updated version each year. Honestly, my biggest surprise when I started camp nursing was caffeine withdrawal the first couple days of camp in the campers. Find out what common health concerns were from past years and be sure to address them. Mental health issues are becoming an increased concern everywhere - and I'm sure your population is not exempt from this.  

Packing list - I would recommend starting with camper packing list as different camps/ climates vary. A good flashlight, magnifying glass, small mirror, ink pens, sharpie, small notebook, bug spray, hand sanitizer, camp map and water bottle go in my personal camp bag. Everything else I need for emergency response is in our camp backpack which I inventory and prepare each year - it goes with me at camp whenever I leave the health center. 

The ACN (Association of Camp Nursing) has lots of great info on it's site - it's a great resource. 

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