At Air Methods, our mission has always been rooted in expanding timely access to care which is why we are thrilled to share that Spright, the drone division of Air Methods, has partnered with Interpath Laboratory to begin the process towards launching a first-of-its-kind drone delivery network to transfer lab specimens.

Many communities located in remote or rural areas lack timely and convenient access to essential medical supplies and service. Medical laboratory services in these areas are currently investing intensive time and resources into sample pick-up where transportation vehicles are driving thousands of miles each day across the region to pick-up specimens from numerous clinics, hospitals and facilities. The addition of Spright’s drone delivery service will alleviate many of the drawbacks and costs associated with automobile-based delivery.

The proof-of-concept initiative kicked off last week with missions from Yellowhawk Tribal Health Center  to Interpath’s main medical laboratory in Pendleton, OR.  This initiative is designed to greatly reduce the turnaround time of critical diagnostic test results for clinics like Yellowhawk, and Interpath patients while also improving patient satisfaction, and enabling healthcare providers to implement follow-up care in a timelier manner. 

If successful, this new approach will allow Interpath Laboratory to transport patient samples throughout the day, rather than primarily overnight. Maximizing daytime sample processing abilities will lead to more efficient laboratory operations, while benefiting patients and healthcare providers with faster delivery of vital test results.

Interpath’s desire to explore new avenues to expand healthcare access is helping rural and Tribal healthcare leaders to make terrific advancements for their patients and the broader communities they serve. We look forward to this proof-of-concept showcasing drone delivery’s ability to solve many of healthcare’s existing access and efficiency challenges, while also improving patient care and experience.

Read the full press release here.