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gifco147

What power options are camps offering for CPAP users?

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Greetings!

I am looking for some input from the group. I am the Health and Safety Officer for one of our Council Camps. We are seeing a steady increase in the number of adult leaders who rely on CPAP, and we have tried several different options to meet their medical needs. Some of our sites are close enough to run a long extension cord, but many are not. We have tried battery boxes with some success, but they are heavy and expensive. During our busiest sessions, demand surpasses availability. 

So,....

What are your camps doing to meet this need?

(Please note that I am talking about power for medical devices only, not power for charging other electronics)

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Three camps that I am aware of do not provide anything, nor do they allow running of cords for safety reasons. It was the same for Jamboree. 

Adults that require CPAPs are on their own to manage their needs. 

Frankly, I would not be in favor of camps redirecting funds away from programming for youth to these type accommodations.  

Edited by HelpfulTracks
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In all honesty, if the adult can’t provide it for himself or pay for it himself to “rent” something, then he shouldn’t be using the camps limited funding for it which will take away from others and it’s not selfish, it’s just don’t go if you know the camp can’t accomdate.

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I'll be blunt - if an adult can't go to summer camp for a week, or camp out for a weekend, without using a CPAP machine, then they don't belong in the woods with the Scouts in the first place.

These machines are being used to treat something the doctors like to call "obstructive sleep apnea" and I like to call snoring.  The medical community has come up with a new way to separate people/insurance companies from their money by declaring something that has been happening for millennia a "severe health problem".  Severe?  Deaths by sleep apnea are extremely rare - like immeasurably rare.

Oh, the medical establishment will scare folks by saying that around 38 thousand people a year who die of cardiac issues (out of over 600,000 per year) also had sleep apnea and that points to a connection that mustn't be trifled with (yeah, and over 600,000 people who die of cardiac issues every year drink water - water must be a contributing factor in their deaths too) but does it really contribute (most people with sleep apnea apparently don't ever have cardiac issues) or is it a coincidence?

Oh sure, a lot of people say they sleep better at night and I won't fault them for that but lets stop buying the "severe health problem" bs and just admit they're being used for this very reason, to sleep better at night.  You can survive a week without using it.

Otherwise, if we are going to insist that CPAP machines are being used to treat a severe medical condition, then a condition that severe that it requires the use of a positive pressure machine to keep folks breathing should be an automatic disqualifier for leading groups in to the outdoors - if your condition is that bad that you need a machine to keep you alive, then its bad enough to keep you home in bed.

My recommendation?  Don't spend any money on this - make the needed use of a CPAP machine at camp a disqualifying health event, just like you would keep someone with the measles or mumps from attending camp.

And before anyone accuses me of not understanding what these machines are, I was on a hospital grade positive pressure machine for over a week after my lung biopsy - it was used to help inflate my lung (because they collapse like a balloon during a biopsy).  A proper positive airway machine doesn't just keep a constant flow of air/oxygen going in to your lungs - it actually pumps air in - you know you have the real deal when you have a full nose/mouth mask pumping away on your face.

These CPAP machines?  They just take air from an external pump and let it flow through your nostrils at a steady rate.  Know what else does that?  An oxygen bottle with a nasal canula.  The CPAP machines are just oxygen generating machines that leave out the oxygen generating part.

 

 

 

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1 minute ago, CalicoPenn said:

I'll be blunt - if an adult can't go to summer camp for a week, or camp out for a weekend, without using a CPAP machine, then they don't belong in the woods with the Scouts in the first place.

These machines are being used to treat something the doctors like to call "obstructive sleep apnea" and I like to call snoring.  The medical community has come up with a new way to separate people/insurance companies from their money by declaring something that has been happening for millennia a "severe health problem".  Severe?  Deaths by sleep apnea are extremely rare - like immeasurably rare.

Oh, the medical establishment will scare folks by saying that around 38 thousand people a year who die of cardiac issues (out of over 600,000 per year) also had sleep apnea and that points to a connection that mustn't be trifled with (yeah, and over 600,000 people who die of cardiac issues every year drink water - water must be a contributing factor in their deaths too) but does it really contribute (most people with sleep apnea apparently don't ever have cardiac issues) or is it a coincidence?

Oh sure, a lot of people say they sleep better at night and I won't fault them for that but lets stop buying the "severe health problem" bs and just admit they're being used for this very reason, to sleep better at night.  You can survive a week without using it.

Otherwise, if we are going to insist that CPAP machines are being used to treat a severe medical condition, then a condition that severe that it requires the use of a positive pressure machine to keep folks breathing should be an automatic disqualifier for leading groups in to the outdoors - if your condition is that bad that you need a machine to keep you alive, then its bad enough to keep you home in bed.

My recommendation?  Don't spend any money on this - make the needed use of a CPAP machine at camp a disqualifying health event, just like you would keep someone with the measles or mumps from attending camp.

And before anyone accuses me of not understanding what these machines are, I was on a hospital grade positive pressure machine for over a week after my lung biopsy - it was used to help inflate my lung (because they collapse like a balloon during a biopsy).  A proper positive airway machine doesn't just keep a constant flow of air/oxygen going in to your lungs - it actually pumps air in - you know you have the real deal when you have a full nose/mouth mask pumping away on your face.

These CPAP machines?  They just take air from an external pump and let it flow through your nostrils at a steady rate.  Know what else does that?  An oxygen bottle with a nasal canula.  The CPAP machines are just oxygen generating machines that leave out the oxygen generating part.

 

 

 

100% agree with you. That’s why I gave you a thumbs up.

 

But, couldn’t it also be considered a “medication and/or disability” and the camp would be required to provide accommodations? Isn’t there a law about that?

 

Not sure, just asking.

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That's a good question - my answer would be that the Social Security Administration does not consider sleep apnea to be a disability qualifying someone for disability benefits so no, it is not a disability.  It is a medical condition and just because something is a medical condition doesn't mean its a disability.

 

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I think the solution will be use camp staff instead of parents, just like competitor camps.

With family needs, work needs, and health problems it is getting harder to supply troop adults for camp and those that can come can only stay for 1 or 2 days.

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1 hour ago, ItsBrian said:

100% agree with you. That’s why I gave you a thumbs up.

Hi ItsBrian,

I am responding to your post, as I see from your bio that you are entering the Nursing Profession. I have been an RN (CCU, Telemetry, ED) and Paramedic for over 25 years, and this may be a good opportunity for professional development. Talk to someone in your program's Respiratory Therapy/Pulmonology Department about the diagnosis of Obstructive Sleep Apnea. They will give you a better understanding of the pathophysiology. 

Good luck in your studies!

Edited by gifco147
edited for clarity
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If we start catering to snoring adults will next be new tents for those with mold allergies, golf cart rentals for obese scouters, all gluten-free camps? We had an ASM who snored so bad he scared wildlife. He went on a diet and lost 80 lbs. he stopped snoring climbed Baldy with us. The last thing I want to hear at summer camp in the mountains is some guy’s cpap machine. 

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I would much prefer that we not go down the path of debating the diagnosis of Obstructive Sleep Apnea, or denigrate individuals who have been diagnosed with it.

Maybe if we consider the question  another way. There are Scouts and Scouters that have special needs that require medical devices. Some of these devices require electricity. We have worked with scouts who had ventilators, suction units, power chairs, and yes... CPAP units.

 What are camps doing, if anything, to help meet those needs?  

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I am waiting for the bill that requires handicap accessibility to the Tooth of Time. I'm thinking it will draw away a fair amount of money from a lot of scouts.    The next thing we will be discussing is electricity to every summer camp site and then every "wilderness" site as well.  So much for the wilderness adventure.   Add to those who are wheel chair bound who want to go along.  It's a slippery slope BSA is on.

Edited by RememberSchiff
No need for little sister dig

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As an at-home CPAP user, I have to agree that providing the ability to use the devices at summer camp is ill advised.

  • If you TRULY feel that your health would be compromised by not using the machine for the duration of your stay at camp, don't go. Many leaders don't subject themselves to potentially dangerous situations for a variety of limitations and health reasons, you can be in that group. No shame in that.
  • If you are so acclimated to its presence that you cannot sleep comfortably without it, that's on you. You don't bring the adjustable frame Tempurpedic either, do you?
  • If you want to have it to reduce snoring for the benefit of others, the issue of snoring at summer camp has been around as long as Scouts. If anything, it provides a relief valve by giving everyone the opportunity to give the snorer a good-natured hard time. If comfort is a goal, let's solve mosquitoes and sand in your shorts before electrically powered snoring relief.

Life is about choices. What example is being set by this accommodation? 

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