Equipment for a M*A*S*H program should be as lightweight as possible, easily cleaned with sterilizing solution and as close to standard as possible. Being creative is important, but cleanliness and care cannot be compromised.
The table seen top and right is specially and specifically engineered for MASH by Mackey Medical and Design Inc of Tulsa, OK 918.425.1966 . This stainless steel table raises and lowers like a flat top surgery table, yet is under 75 pounds and is easy to load and move. Available add-ons include a detachable IV stand, instrument trays and more.
Heavy duty ironing boards also make adjustable height tables which are lightweight and sturdy.
Make sure that carriers are securely fastened on the sides; have cable ties on hand to replace missing bolts so that animals do not get loose.
Folding cages enable a large number of cages to be carried safely and easily in a vehicle. Instead of stacking folding carriers flat on top of each other, they should stand on end like library books during transport. We’ve found the weight of cages stacked on each other damages the welds on the bottom ones.
Stainless steel V-trays (right) hold the animal in position on the table. If you need to create a heated top on your table, a heating pad under the V-top will add some warmth. The wire piece seen in the photo, made of quarter inch splint rod, holds the paws and head in place, balancing the animal on the V-tray.
This blue moving quilt can be purchased for under $20 from places that rent vehicles for moving furniture. They’re great recovery area quilts, stretchers for moving animals, and they protect equipment during transport and more. They’re easy to wash and dry.
- Check-in supplies include paperwork (two or three part carbonless duplicates are a great way to generate to-go and onsite records at once), pens, tables, chairs, tape, markers (Sharpies are best), sheets to cover cages of frightened dogs or cats, thermometer, a scale is usually set up so dogs may be weighed upon check-in and signs with pick-up information.
- During the day– this is divided into supplies brought by the visiting M*A*S*H team and the local host. The visiting team will bring all surgery equipment, supplies, emergency kit, fluids, etc. The host team will provide cleaning supplies, blankets, towels, newspaper, paper towels, a stretcher (may come with the visitors), a working phone if possible, small paper bowls (for water and food after animals wake up), folding tables for supplies. Designated volunteer tasks include overseeing the recovery area, which includes making sure the final paperwork is done properly and moving animals, a task which should be considered when scheduling volunteers to be sure that folks who are able to lift are there at the time large dogs are having surgery.
- Recovery supplies (on previous page)
- Check out– volunteers will need to explain aftercare to each person picking up an animal. Covering the instructions verbally is important even though written aftercare instructions are handed out. Any paperwork which needs to be done at check-out must be completed and animals that are on site late must be watered, fed, etc.