Portable Equipment Design and Transportation
d. What are layout considerations?

A work environment can be created with portable equipment that will approximate dental office conditions. Locating the portable equipment (handpieces, air/water syringe, suction, light) and instruments within the immediate reach of the dental provider and assistant is important to minimize fatigue and maximize efficiency by reducing twisting or extensive reaching movements. An adequate work surface is approximately 20" x 24" to maximize ergonomics during dental procedures.

Adequate illumination from overhead lights and handpiece/mirror fiber optics should also be emphasized.

Layout of equipment and supplies for dental sealant programs using multiple units often depends on the space that is provided by the community agency and the location of sinks and electrical outlets. The space available will also determine how many "stations" can be set up and the flow of traffic to, from and between the chairs. View Diagrams for operatory set-ups and patient flow diagrams in the online manual Seal America.

Generally no special utility needs are required other than access to a grounded 110-volt electrical outlet. Many units may be purchased with a 220-volt option. If possible, prior to the day you are providing clinical services, determine how many electrical outlets there are and how many work stations can be set up. Make sure you have extra extension cords.

Adapted from Murphy E.  Mobile Dentistry. PennWell Pub Co, 1996, p 248