by Michael Willoughby
The Ugandan government is set to permit Ugandan-German innovator, John Goslin, to start supplying blood to public hospitals in Kampala using drones from March 2020, according to that country’s Observer newspaper.
Goslino’s ‘Blood Connect’ project secured government approval through the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation. “Although he didn’t mention the exact amounts, Goslino confirmed that his company, Flexdrone has already received funding for the project,” reports the paper.
According to the Observer, the innovator came up with an idea of delivering medical supplies by drone after realising that people, especially in hard-to-reach areas, encounter challenges which lead to loss of life when they can’t access supplies like blood or have their samples tested early enough for prompt medical intervention.
The paper reports that the Uganda Blood and Transfusion Services (UBTS) has agreed to use the app that they are finalizing to help them establish blood the needs of different facilities. Goslino was speaking at an exhibition for private health care innovators and providers in Kampala yesterday, according to the Observer.
“Apart from delivering light packages of at least six kilograms within small distances, Goslino, with his team at Flexdrone have already tested whether their innovation can cover bigger distances through getting medical samples from Kasese to the Uganda Virus Research Institute in Entebbe.”
In his talk, he told the crowd that, while the team was was starting with Kampala for the blood samples, the plan was to deliver packages to hard-to-reach areas since they are the most challenged.
“With their drones, he says, a medical sample can be delivered to a distance of more than 100 kilometres, in just an hour,” the Observer reports. “He says the plan is to have vaccines and sundries like gloves delivered easily. Rwanda and Ghana are some of the African countries already using drones for medical supplies.”
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