Hyderabad: Blue Dart formed the Med-Express Consortium for delivery of vaccines and emergency medical supplies to the remotest parts of India with drones. The initiative is part of the ‘Medicine from the Sky’ project in collaboration with the Government of Telangana, World Economic Forum, Niti Aayog and Healthnet Global.
The Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA) has granted the project with necessary exemptions and rights to fly drone flights on an experimental basis in Telangana.
The aim is to assess an alternate logistics route in providing safe, accurate and reliable pickup and delivery of health care items (medicines, Covid-19 vaccines, units of blood, diagnostic specimens and other lifesaving equipment) from distribution centre to specific location and back.
Blue Dart Med-Express Drone flights will deploy an immersive delivery model to optimise the current healthcare logistics within Telangana. The model will enable deliveries from district medical stores and blood banks to Primary Health Centers (PHCs), Community Health Centres (CHCs), Blood Storage Units & further from PHCs/CHCs to Central Diagnostic laboratories.
Balfour Manuel, MD, Blue Dart says, “As an organisation Blue Dart has always been surrounded with the technology of the future. It is this ability that has helped us to not only withstand the pandemic but thrive with growth. While we reach out to over 35,000 locations across the country, the current situation calls for a much deeper penetration of vaccines.”
Rama Devi Lanka, director, Emerging Technologies and Officer on Special Duty (OSD), ITE&C Department, Government of Telangana, said, “The project would generate real and actionable insights to drive future adoption policies and integration with the existing healthcare supply chain. With covid-19 pandemic wrecking existing supply chains, adopting such disruptive technologies is the need of the hour.”
Jayesh Ranjan, principal secretary, ITE&C Department, Government of Telangana, said, “Telangana is one of the most proactive states looking to adopt emerging technologies, and the ‘Medicine from the Sky’ project using drones is in line with the same principles.”
“This project is one of the first such programmes in the country where multiple drones would fly BVLOS to establish their value proposition for the healthcare supply chain. The vision is to ensure healthcare equity for rural areas,” Ranjan added.
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