Robyn Main established Moving Eyes Mobile Optometry Clinic in 2005 and it is now the longest-established domiciliary optometrist service in Perth. She draws on her broad experience in this field to discuss the equipment she uses and the reasons for her choices.
Weight is a big issue. That’s Robyn Main’s advice to any optometrist considering taking up mobile optometry to aged-care facilities. A visiting optometrist will be limited by how much equipment they can physically carry to each facility. ‘The load can be very heavy when you have to include optical frames,’ she said. ‘You have to consider every gram you put in your optometry bags as you may have to carry them hundreds of metres or set up in several locations in one facility.’
The equipment included in her armamentarium reflects her commitment to keeping the load light.
First on the list is her indispensable laptop computer. ‘I have a Lenovo Yoga Ultrabook; it’s very lightweight and it’s what I use to access my Sunix Vision Elite practice management system for record-keeping,’ she said.
The Ultrabook/Sunix combination also offers access to Medicare’s online claiming service, which expedites turnaround on bulk-billed claim payments.
Equally indispensable is Dr Alan Johnston’s High Contrast Word Reading Chart, a simple card that was distributed to Optometry Australia members in 2014 in the Pharma Low Vision Primer. ‘I use it to test near vision, as it is in logMAR notation and has low contrast sensitivity on the back.’
Main says her favourite piece of equipment is her iCare TAO1i tonometer. ‘It’s light, portable and reliable for IOP testing. When I check patients with dementia who are unstable in many areas, this device is a godsend, as I don’t have to worry about fussing around with eye-drops or resting a probe on their frisky, moving corneas. For those with Parkinson’s disease who can be in odd postural positions, I can usually get a good reading, too.
‘Apart from those, I use just the stock standard optometry equipment,’ Main said. ‘I often wish there was better equipment to use for my visits to aged-care facilities.’
iCare TAO1i tonometer, a favourite