JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO, TX - The U.S. Army Medical Test and Evaluation Activity (USAMTEAC), formally named the U.S. Army Medical Department Board, conducted a customer test of an Ophthalmic Slit Lamp (OSL). The test was conducted for the U.S. Army Medical Materiel Development Activity (USAMMDA) at the Deployable Medical System Equipment for Training site, Camp Bullis, TX.
The customer test was conducted in a simulated field hospital at the DMSET site, which represented the operational environment. The purpose of the test was to assess the effectiveness of the OSL in supporting the medical mission and the suitability of the OSL in a simulated operational environment. The OSL was operated by Soldiers having various medical military occupational specialties and areas of concentration.
The OSL is an instrument that consists of a high-intensity light source that can be focused to shine a thin sheet of light into the eye and is used in conjunction with a bio-microscope. Most people have seen an OSL while receiving an eye test. The OSL facilitates an examination of the anterior segment and posterior segment of the human eye, which includes the eyelid, sclera, conjunctiva, iris, natural crystalline lens, and the cornea. The binocular slit lamp examination provides a stereoscopic magnified view of the system structure in detail that enables an anatomical diagnosis to be made for a variety of eye conditions.
“I think it's a very good device, the test players are happy with it,” said Charles Lohsandt, USAMTEAC Test Officer and Equipment Specialists. “The lamp has been pretty much standard in design since the beginning. They just upgraded the technology compared to the one used in the field right now,” said Lohsandt. “This OSL goes from a standard light bulb to an LED which requires less power, last longer, and is brighter. That's a big upgrade, the test players like the LED and the actual capability they have for fine-tuning the light and simpler field maintenance.”
Lt. Col. Keith Schmidt, Chief of Optometry at the Madigan Army Medical Center, had an opportunity to conduct a hands-on test of the OSL. “Overall I think it's a good piece of equipment, it's consistent with the general practice standards,” said Schmidt. “I wouldn't have any issues with utilizing this equipment within our actual medical facilities, although what we’re testing this for is to be used in the field and in deployed environments. Ideally were concerned with its durability and its portability in an austere location such as a combat support hospital.”
After the customer test, USAMTEAC will provide an abbreviated operational report to USAMMDA, assisting them in the acquisition decision-making process. USAMMDA will review the results and determine if additional tests are required before finalizing the procurement process and any potential field deployments.
The USAMTEAC is part of the U.S. Army Medical Center of Excellence. To learn more about their mission visit their website at https://medcoe.army.mil/usamteac.