Drones for Health

Unmanned aerial systems (UAS) have significant potential to improve the availability of health products and services at the last mile. VillageReach is working to understand the use of drones for product delivery in low-resource environments, collaborating with stakeholders including governments, donors, NGO partners, UAS manufacturers, and local universities and technologists. We have developed costing studies, and provided guidance and program management based on our expertise in strengthening the health system at the last mile.

VillageReach believes that a more robust and coordinated evidence base is required to understand the regulatory requirements, costs and benefits associated with UAS use cases in humanitarian settings. Only then will the potential for the use of UAS at the last mile shift to a reality.

UAV Working Group

A collaborative effort from the beginning, VillageReach and partners developed the UAV for Payload Delivery Working Group (UPDWG) to serve as an informal knowledge and resource-sharing mechanism for those involved in the development, advancement, and application of UAS for public health and supply chain improvement. VillageReach coordinates all the group, donating staff time to organize calls, webinars, resources, and member outreach. Over the past year, UPDWG membership has grown to more than 80 individuals from dozens of organizations and countries. Quarterly webinars have covered topics including transportation cost modeling analysis and community and government perceptions of UAV use in sub-Saharan Africa. Future topics may include navigating the regulatory environment for country buy-in, shared frameworks for evaluating the impact of UAS, and sustainable business models for UAV system interventions.

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Join the Working Group

Next webinar:

Wednesday, May 22, 10 – 11 AM EST

As the drone technology tests intensify at the Malawi Humanitarian Drone Corridor, mutual learning and experience sharing becomes essential for the successful and meaningful application of drones during those tests. The Malawi Department of Civil Aviation, together with UPDWG, VillageReach and UNICEF Malawi is hosting a round table discussion in order to address and discuss the technical, logistical and other challenges that drone companies have encountered during their time at the drone corridor.

Register Here


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drone landing

VillageReach, UNICEF and Matternet test UAV prototypes for HIV test transport in Malawi


Past webinars


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