Instant logistics specialist Zipline has further expanded its already extensive presence in Africa by starting work on a new medical drone delivery hub in Nigeria’s Cross River State.
A groundbreaking event took place on Sunday in Ogoja, towards the northern border of Cross River State. The ceremony marked the long-awaited process of preparing Zipline’s medical drone delivery facility in Nigeria, which was originally agreed in May. It’s unclear what caused the delay in starting work, but officials involved in the project say the logistics and flight hub should be ready by June.
The company’s operation in Cross River State reflects how finely tuned – and replicable – its operations in Africa have been since it began work delivering medical drones in 2016, transporting blood products to various destinations in Rwanda. Like a similar center, Zipline has started to set up in Bayelsa State, South West Nigeria, its Cross River facility will send 24/7 supply flights if needed to Requirement.
This will enable the regular supply of approximately 10,000 health facilities across the state, and thus avoid shortages or depletion of supplies resulting from irregular or long road transport. It will also allow rapid delivery of medicines, vaccines and blood in emergency situations.
As is the case in Bayelsa and other African countries like Namibia and Ghana that work with Zipline, the Cross River medical drone delivery operation reflects the determination of local and national governments to expand access health care to remote or hard-to-reach areas that need it most. .
“Improved and timely access to health care is a cardinal goal of the state government…(and) our partnership with Zipline underscores this,” Cross River State Health Commissioner Betta Edu said. . “Partnering with Zipline would further ensure even distribution of medical products to healthcare facilities across the state and we look forward to serious completion of the project.”
Catherine Odiase, country manager for Zipline in Nigeria, described the Cross River medical drone delivery operation as another example of how the company is working to ensure better access to healthcare across the country. Africa, in close collaboration with the local authorities who have made this objective their priority.
“We are on a mission to reinvent healthcare delivery systems through cutting-edge solutions,” Odiase said. “This is to ensure healthy living and promote well-being for everyone at all ages. When completed, in approximately four months, the hub will facilitate the delivery of vital medical supplies to health facilities that serve millions of people across the state.
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