Nigeria’s vast geographic areas and large population have posed serious challenges in providing timely access to medical supplies to remote communities.
This is why logistics firms like Zipline through its innovative drone delivery model, are addressing healthcare supply gaps across the country.
Presently, over 13 million Nigerians residing in the remote communities in Kaduna, Cross River and Bayelsa States have received medical supplies in the last four years through the use of drone delivery service offered by Zipline Nigeria, a logistics service company.
The introduction of drone services in these states, according to the company, has revolutionised the transportation of medical supplies in rural communities and has ensured timely delivery of essential medical products and commodities to over 1005 healthcare facilities located in the three states.
Catherine Odiase, general manager of Zipline Nigeria, said that since the service began in August 2022, it has delivered medical products to several health facilities within Kaduna, Cross and Bayelsa States as part of its partnership with the state governments.
Odiase said the efficiency and speed at which the company delivers these products has largely improved the provision of healthcare services and further endeared it to these rural communities.
“Zipline Nigeria currently covers over 500 healthcare facilities in Kaduna State; over 350 healthcare facilities in Cross Rivers and over 200 health facilities in Bayelsa State,” she said.
She further said that the warm reception the company received from communities in the three states where it operates has further motivated it to ensure that it reaches as many health facilities as possible that need their services.
On the company’s drive to empower the communities and create employment, Odiase said all the personnel working in the three states it currently operates are indigenes of the states to ensure that the communities benefit from its operations.
Endurance Emma, a health worker at the primary health care centre in Pambegua, Kaduna State, lauded Zipline for its effective and prompt delivery of medical products to the healthcare facilities in the community in Kaduna, adding that this has helped save the lives of pregnant women in the community.
“Citizens in this area see Zipline Nigeria as a positive change in the community because of its attention and timely delivery of drugs to the facility because they know that when they come to the facility, Zipline will be on hand to supply drugs needed,” she said.
Zipline is offering similar services in several countries such as Rwanda and Ghana, overcoming traditional challenges such as limited storage facilities, transportation options, unpredictable weather conditions, and long distances.
It aims to address this by ensuring that critical supplies reach those in need, regardless of location.