The following are some tips and suggestions that may save you some time or perhaps make your mission better, overall.
VOLTAGE in the power grid varies from country to country. Most of the world including the European Union’s fall between 220 and 240 volts and most have 50 hz. See the website www.kropla.com/electric2.htm for a list of voltages for most countries. Most optical equipment is made to operate on 120 volts with 60 hz, although some have a switch to convert from 120 to 220-240. If you are planning to use a voltage converter to convert the voltage, remember the converter must fit the local recepticle and it will not change the hz. Delicate instruments may not operate if made for 60 hz and the power you are converting is 50 hz.
W/A supplies a countertop charger for use with 110-240 volts and a 71000-C handle with an adapter for 220-240 volts. Check steeles.com for the best price and selection.
Check radioshack.com for the location of your nearest Radio Shack. They provide a selection of converters and plugs.
W/A 71000-C Handle is invaluable when your office handles need to be charged in a countertop charger and the only power is 220 volt for your 120 volt charger. With this handle you can charge by plugging it into a 120 volt outlet, charge it using a voltage converter or switch to regular “c” cell batteries. The W/A fully charged battery will only last 2 hours of full time use and regular batteries can be replaced in seconds with fresh ones.
Note: Standard converters will only charge about 2 hours before they overheat and you must not use them to charge over the posted amps. Hair dryers are a no no!
Bluminator, manufactured by Eidolon Optical, causes foreign bodies, abrasions, and epithelial defects to fluoresce vividly during fluorescein exams. The LED light comes in blue, white and yellow with a 7x magnification fits on a lanyard around your neck and may replace a slit lamp in some cases where electricity is not available or there are restrictions on what you can carry.
Portable Lensometer, the standard is a Pentax, but Chinese reproductions are quite acceptable. They operate using 2 AA batteries and are great for checking the glasses the patients wear to the clinic. They are also useful if you are using recycled glasses and the bag and the glasses get separated. These “lost souls” normally get pitched.
ICARE, quick IOP requires no calibration no anesthetic drops, suitable for children and dementia patients. Tips come packed in 100s.
ITEST, a small plastic phoropter that is adjusted by the patient for spheres from +4.00 to –4.00. A modified version tests for cylinder.
Laser pointer, will save you thousands of steps doing visual acuities. Just point at the letter, number or picture from the 20 foot line instead of walking back and forth.
First aid kit, buy a standard first aid kit and add: cipro 500mg., Imodium, advil, Pepto Bismol chewable and mecilzine 25mg. Include metzenbaum scissors, stainless steel pickups and a couple dental picks. The instruments can be picked up at a local flea market and they will be worth their weight in gold.
Take plenty of scotch tape, duct tape and WD 40. These things make the world go ‘round on missions. If my suggestions are not clear or you have questions, don’t hesitate to call or email me.
I’m sure there are many more tips, feel free to point them out to me and I’ll add them next time.