Rural areas in Queensland, Australia will soon benefit from the supply of medical drones from Swoop Aero. A new partnership between humanitarian drone supplier Swoop Aero, TerryWhite Chemmart and Australia’s largest health wholesaler Symbion will test the remote controlled drone delivery of medicines.
In the town of Goondiwindi on the Queensland-New South Wales border, test flights with Swoop Aero medical drones will begin shortly. Swoop Aero works with aviation authorities to ensure that all regulations are followed during the tests.
“TerryWhite Chemmart Goondiwindi’s pharmacist Lucy Walker said she was delighted that her community was selected to test drug delivery by drone,” said a Swoop Aero press release.
“Many of my customers live on farms or small towns in remote areas. In some cases, a visit to our pharmacy to pick up your essential medication can be a three-hour round trip, ”said Ms. Walker.
“With the ability to serve people within a 130 km radius of Goondiwindi, this drone trial offers many of our customers enormous comfort and safety.
“It is important that we learn a lot from the study about what works well and what may need improvement. We can use this insight not only to optimize service for our community, but also to share it with other TerryWhite Chemmart regional pharmacies across Australia who may be looking for a drone delivery service. “
Drone delivery of drugs “could be critical”
“The project is funded by the EBOS Group, the parent company of Symbion, and underscores the company’s commitment to ensuring that all Australians have access to medicines regardless of where they live and under all circumstances,” the press release said.
“Not only is this a very convenient drug delivery option for those who live outside of access to their pharmacy, but as we saw during the terrible bushfires in Australia last summer, there were cases of access Some homes and towns across the street have been shut down completely, ”said Brett Barons, CEO of Symbion.
“Having a drone to deliver medicines could be critical in situations where accessibility is limited.”
Swoop Aero has always delivered critical medical care in remote areas: in Malawi, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Mozambique and Vanuatu.
The Swoop Aero System
Eric Peck, CEO of Swoop Aero, says the company will bring what it has learned to the Queensland project. “When it comes to medication, safety and security are obviously important, and Swoop Aero is committed to making sure that safety is our number one priority. For this reason, we have developed a complete aviation system around our drone technology, which is unique in its scalability. “
The Swoop Aero medical delivery drone can reach speeds of 115 km / h and, above all, withstand extreme weather conditions such as strong winds and rain. With a range of 130 km (approx. 80 miles) on a single charge, the drone can reach anyone who lives within that radius of Goondiwindi.
“The drone will fly in and out of a central point in Goondiwindi, the flight path being fully automated and approved by CASA [Australia’s aviation regulator], deliver the customer’s products and then return to base, ready for the next job. After a little training, it is very easy to use, ”says Peck.
Swoop Aero’s system was designed not just to get the job done, but to minimize disruption to communities and minimize privacy and security concerns.
“Our aircraft do not have cameras on board to film in flight, but are controlled by a three-stage communication system consisting of mobile internet, satellite communication and a data connection. The sound of one of our drones taking off is similar to a bus starting the engine and only takes up to 10 seconds for the aircraft to reach cruising altitude. At this point, the noise is imperceptible to normal background noise during normal cruise. ”
Miriam McNabb is editor-in-chief of DRONELIFE and CEO of JobForDrones, a marketplace for professional drone services, and a fascinating observer of the emerging drone industry and the regulatory environment for drones. Miriam has written over 3,000 articles focusing on the commercial drone space and is an international speaker and recognized figure in the industry. Miriam graduated from the University of Chicago and has over 20 years experience in high-tech sales and marketing for new technologies.
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