Catalonia is set to embark on a groundbreaking initiative, piloting the use of drones to transport biological samples, pharmaceuticals, and medical equipment between various healthcare facilities, primarily situated in rural areas. As announced by the Department of Health of the Generalitat in a press release on Thursday, this initiative aims to streamline and enhance medical logistics.

«We’ve witnessed the functionality of a robot, a drone, which we foresee integrating into the healthcare system in the near future,» explained Manel Balcells, the Health Minister of the Generalitat, during a demonstration at the Olot Hospital in Girona. The demonstration, showcasing a drone’s capabilities, took place following a flight from the Vall d’en Bas Basic Health Area.

This event was part of a larger discourse on the challenges and potentials of drone technology in healthcare, organized by the TIC Salut Social Foundation, the Telecommunications and Information Technology Center (CTTI), and the Olot i Comarcal de la Garrotxa Hospital Foundation.

In addition to the demonstration, the session also introduced the report ‘Integration of Drones in the Healthcare Environment.’ Balcells emphasized the intention to procure drone transport services, foreseeing it as a cost-effective and environmentally friendly alternative with a reduced carbon footprint.

According to Balcells, «The application of drones in healthcare is of great interest for advancing environmental sustainability, reducing costs, and minimizing travel time.»

Joan Guanyabens, Director of the TIC Salut Foundation, highlighted the immense potential of drones in improving medical care and transportation of biological samples and medical supplies, particularly in remote or hard-to-reach areas. Guanyabens outlined plans for pilot tests focusing on logistical, emergency, and clinical aspects, involving key stakeholders within the healthcare system.

The initial pilot will involve transporting biological samples (blood and urine analyses) from Vall d’en Bas to the Olot Hospital. Subsequently, a second pilot will take place in the North Metropolitan area, focusing on sample transportation between the Sant Fost de Campsentelles Primary Care Center and the Germans Trias i Pujol Hospital – Can Ruti – in Badalona, Barcelona. These initiatives signify a significant step towards leveraging technological innovation to improve healthcare accessibility and efficiency in Catalonia.

Article written by Diario Farma



Diario Farma