An Unusual Travelling Dispensary
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A Special Fiat Vehicle Equipped with a Wide Range of Medical Appliances to Aid in Combating Disease WITH the object of aiding in the fight against tuberculosis, the Fiat Motor Car Co., of Turin, recently presented to the Red Cross Society at Rome a unique travelling dispensary equipped with a wide range of the latest appliances known to medical science. It is intended that vehicles similarly equipped shall be put into service in many C01113tries, and that they shall carry the camnaign into rural districts and remote mountain villages, where neither doctors nor hospitals .exist, and where the disease often .finds fertile breeding ground. We are informed that inquiries have been received from America, Belgium, and particularly the Balkan countries, for motor vehicles of this type. The cost of operation is low, for in normatcircunastances, with the medi. cal van working in a radius of 20 miles,
about 20 visits can be made in one day at a cost of about 2s. per consultation. The chassis carries an all-metal body,
the main part of which serves as a commodious medical room. The modern scientific equipment which is included was supplied by the Itan Co., of Milan. It comprises a complete X-ray installation, table carrying a microscope, all the necessary apparatus for analysis and sterilization, as well as a cinematographic apparatus, the last-named being used to illustrate popular lectures on health and preventive measures against consumption.
Good work has been done in mounting this elaborate and delicate equipment on an ordinary chassis, for it can be ased with the same efficiency and degree of safety as in a hospital.
All parts' of the X-ray installation which come into contact with the patient are covered with easily changeable or disinfectable paper and celluloid screens. Those parts of the apparatus which carry high-tension current are insulated from surrounding objects, and all-metal parts are earthed. The electric generator is placed outside the vehicle, alongside the driver ; it furnishes sufficient current for an X-ray photograph of the thorax to be taken in a fraction of a second.
The lockers for storing the photographic plates and slides have electric safety locks connected to the controller of the X-ray apparatus, so that should it be forgotten to close the lockers this electrical device rectifies the omission.
During an X-ray examination the dispensary is illuminated by a special filtered-ray lamp, which, whilst not interfering with the clearness of the image on the screen, does not leave the patient in the dark. The plant has been devised so that the X-ray apparatus can he carried into the patient's bedroom in case he be unable to leave the house.