On Friday, a novel experiment was conducted in the state of Uttarakhand where a drone was used to deliver blood samples from a hospital 36 kilometres away in just 18 minutes. The drone was sent from a district hospital in Nandgaon to another hospital in Tehri. The blood sample was delivered in a short span of time which would have otherwise taken 70-100 minutes to be delivered by road.
Uttarakhand: Blood sample was sent from Dist Hospital,Nandgaon to Dist Hospital,Tehri through a drone, y’day. Dr in Tehri hospital says, “It was a successful trial run. Hospital was 30 km away but blood was transported within 18 min. It’ll be helpful for patients in remote areas” pic.twitter.com/DSntXXThlS
— ANI (@ANI) June 8, 2019
“It was a successful trial run. The hospital was 30 km away but blood was transported within 18 min. It’ll be helpful for patients in remote areas,” said a doctor at the Tehri hospital. He also added that the trial run was part of an ongoing tele-medicine project in Tehri Garhwal.
CDSpace Robotics Limited, a company owned by IIT Kanpur alumni Nikhil Upadhye, manufactured the drone. As per reports, the drone was capable of carrying emergency medicines as well as blood units with cooling kits. The drone can carry a weight of 500 gm of weight and can travel up to 50 km on a single charge. More trial runs would be carried out within a few weeks.
Dr Ashutosh Sayana, principal of Government Doon Medical College & Hospital while speaking to TOI said that most blood samples become unusable when it’s being transported from the distant hills to the labs in cities. The reduction in transportation time would be greatly beneficial to patients in remote areas. This method would also ensure that there is no scarcity of blood for accident victims.
In December 2018, a robotic arm was used to operate on a patient 35 km away. Dr Tejas Patel carried out the world’s first in-human telerobotic coronary intervention surgery.