Every day the Eye Care Charity of Mid America’s Mobile Vision Clinic (MVC) visits schools to perform eye exams and provide glasses to low-income children in our community. The MVC is fitted with two exam lanes so we can provide free eye care for up to 50 children in one visit. Also located on board is a finishing lab where glasses are made on the spot.
Once aboard, a child completes a pre-test and eye exam. From there, he or she chooses a designer frame, generously donated by VSP Global, Europa, and Modern Optical.
Once a frame is selected our Director of Operations carefully measures, cuts and assembles each new pair of glasses on site in a six step process outlined below.
Step One: Frame Tracer
The Frame Tracer does just that – traces the frames. The plastic lenses are popped out and the frames are placed on the tracer. A needle runs along the inside of the frame to capture the lens shape and size. The data collected is automatically shared with the other machines in the process.
Step Two: Auto Lensometer
We keep lenses organized by prescription in the lab for quick and easy selection. Lenses are mounted, one at a time, into the auto lensometer which reads the prescription, orients the Rx axis, and marks the optical center of the uncut lenses, preparing them for the lens blocker.
Step Three: Lens Blocker
Lenses are then placed one at a time in the lens blocker which ensures the edger cuts the correct lens over the optical center and affixes a block to the lens so it can be held in place throughout the edging process.
Step Four: Edger
Once the blocker is in place, the lenses are placed, one at a time, in the edger which cuts the lens to fit the measurements of the frame as collected by the frame tracer. This process takes about one to two minutes per lens, depending on the prescription and thickness of the lens.
Step Five: Assembly
After both lenses are properly edged, they are placed in the frames and cleaned. From start to finish, this entire process can take anywhere from five to seven minutes per pair of glasses.
Step Six: Supporting a Bright Future
The best part of the process! The child receives his or her new pair of glasses (printed Rx, new case, and cleaning cloth) and returns to the classroom ready to thrive.