India to use automated drones to deliver medical supplies

India has recently started to use drones in order to make healthcare more accessible to remote regions.

Indeed, successful test flights have been conducted since last year, including the transportation of blood samples from Meerut to Noida, a suburb of Dehli. The journey took the drone an hour, with a scheduled stop for a battery swap, which is a drastic reduction in time compared to humans. The test was carried out by a diagnostics lab using an unmanned aerial system and it is expected to be the first one in many more.

The company that built the drone, Skye Air Mobility, has already done more than 1,000 flights and delivered more than 3,500kg of mixed payload since November. These flights help reduce the time to get and offer medical supplies to remote regions and benefit patients who need fast results and treatments.

However, there are still a few challenges to overcome such as the cost of such technology or how to keep the conditions of certain medicines including vaccines that need to be transported and distributed between 2C and 8C. Besides, the government has released rules and regulations that make it harder to operate commercial drones, even during disaster relief and rescue operations.