STATES CHRONICLE – Offering people all the medical equipment they need during emergencies can be tough in poorer countries, but the government of an east African country found a solution to this crisis. Tanzania wants to use drones to deliver medicine, vaccines, or anything a person might need in case of a medical emergency.
Delivering medical supplies with drones in Tanzania
The government of Tanzania is planning to start this ambitious project at the beginning of 2018. They will benefit from more than 100 drones which will be launched from four big centers of distribution. All these drones should end up performing around 2,000 deliveries per day.
For this amazing initiative, the Tanzanian government will receive help from a startup from San Francisco, called Zipline. This company builds drones and other autonomous robots which can perform deliveries. In this case, the robots will be able to deliver blood, vaccines, or medicines, in those areas which are hard to access with other means of transportation.
Drones are quick and efficient
The company has already been collaborating with other countries from Eastern Africa. Last year, Zipline made a partnership with Rwanda’s ministry of health, and launched what was regarded as the first commercial drone flights all over a country. Back then, the drones were cap able of performing 150 flights every day, and managed to deliver blood to 21 centers of transfusion.
A drone can carry equipment weighing 1.5 kg and transport it at 110 km per hour. Also, it can perform an average distance of 160 km during a flight. When health workers are in need of blood or any other medical supplies, they place an order via SMS. Then, in an average of 30 minutes, the supplies reach their destination.
It’s important to know that these drones never land. They hover near the ground and, when they reach their destination, they drop the supplies in a designated point. This makes the small robots quicker, as they can return for other supplies and perform a new delivery.
Image Source: Wikimedia Commons