Drones to deliver medical supplies between hospitals

Medical supplies will be flown between Lorn and Islands District General Hospital and Mull and Iona Community Hospital.

Drones will deliver medical supplies over water in a new trial between two hospitals.

Oban Airport in Argyll is providing safety support for the scheme from Skyports, a London-based company.

Medical supplies will be flown between Lorn and Islands District General Hospital in Oban and Mull and Iona Community Hospital in Craignure, Mull.

The trial, operated by the local authority, will run between May 25 and June 5.

Councillor Aileen Morton, leader of Argyll and Bute Council, said: “The Covid-19 pandemic has brought distinct challenges to rural communities and island communities.

“Community spirit, determination and innovation is helping overcome them.”

She added: “We’re delighted that the airport is involved in trialling a project aimed at changing the way health services in disperse communities are linked together.

“We’re already using technology to provide health advice and information remotely.

“Use of drones could assist vital equipment to be transferred more efficiently and effectively.”

The project is designed to support NHS logistics operations to help provide frontline staff with the necessary equipment to do their jobs safely.

It also aims to help hard-to-reach communities get essential medical provisions.

Skyports plans to fly its delivery drones beyond visual line of sight, along a route south from Oban and then north-west to the north coast of the Isle of Mull.

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