As we know, drone technology is a relatively new concept. But, in the time that it has been alive, it has grown by leaps and bounds. It started off as something that looked more like a child’s play thing. But over time it has consistently gained more usability in terms of both features and longevity.
Companies like Amazon have already begun the planning phase for the usage of drones for delivery. As more and more companies start to adopt this convenient new technology, it wouldn’t be too long until drones become more common in the hospital scene.
Although not mainstream, the usage of drones for medical purposes has already begun. From delivering blood to patients in hospitals that have weak infrastructure and transportation services, to being deployed in disaster scenarios, drones have made operations easier and more importantly, they have made operations possible in regions that are not reachable.
There are already several examples where drones have been used to save the day. For example, A drone was used to deliver blood to a child being treated at a facility with weak infrastructure in Ghana. Currently, hospital designers are exploring the possibility of creating drone power hospitals to help hurricane prone regions.
According to reports, one design firm has started planning the design of a drone based hospital after witnessing the havoc created by hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico. This type of hospital would be able to function even if there were broken roads, as drones would be used to deliver supplies to the patients.
The way it would work is, a drone port would be set up outside each patients’ room. Drones can then drop off supplies at these ports which would lead into a cabinet inside each room. This way supply shortages can be avoided and the space required to build such type of hospitals can also be reduced as areas dedicated to storing supplies wouldn’t have to be allocated. This could help in delivering services to rural areas prone to extreme weather and could also open up the possibility to solve a long list of other healthcare related problems.
Moving samples from lab tests – Drones could help in saving a significant amount of time and can easily speed up the process of sample delivery. They could be used to transport blood or urine samples to the necessary locations which would not only free up the nurses’ time but also increase the efficiency of service delivery.
Medication delivery – Drones could also be used to deliver medication to patients, right to their bedside. This method of delivery could easily eliminate the possibility of human error as drones can be programmed to pick up the right medication, at the correct dosage. This also means that the medical staffers can have more face to face time with the patients.
Improved home care – Some patients may not be able to leave their homes due to their condition. In scenarios like this, drones can be used to deliver medications and drugs directly to their homes, saving them the hassle of having to make the commute to the hospital. Besides this, the hospital can also dedicate their in-house beds to patients that are in critical need of treatment as there would be more free beds available, thanks to the drones.
Technology in healthcare will keep improving. Drone technology is one such niche within the healthcare technology sector that will see constant growth. As more and more doctors and medical professionals start to realize this, the quality of healthcare services that patients receive will also be enhanced manifold!