Mawuli Atiemo (middle) with Virginia Palmer (second from right), Mahama Asei Seini (second from left) and other government officials
Medical Drone Delivery Company, Zipline, has observed the fourth anniversary of its operations in the country and partnership with the government; hinting of brining its services closer to the public.
Marking the day at Zipline’s Omenako operation centre, General Manager, Zipline Ghana, Mawuli Atiemo, affirmed the company’s commitment to further expand its operations with other use cases and home delivery of commodities across the country.
He added, “In terms of diversification, we are currently exploring other avenues such as agriculture. So, we are currently working with veterinary services directorate on a pilot to explore the possibility of vaccination for poultry for example ruminants and other things.”
Mr. Atiemo also noted that soon the company would begin the pilot of drone home delivery service- Platform 2 (P2)-launched in March 2023 in the US.
Touching on the impact made, Mr. Atiemo said, Zipline has completed 370, 000 deliveries of medical products, blood supplies, vaccines, and animal health commodities to 2,700 health facilities across the country, since starting operations in April 2019.
Furthermore, he said Zipline has successfully delivered over five million units of various medical supplies, effectively equipping healthcare facilities to cater for the diverse needs of their communities and in doing so, positively impacted the lives of over 20 million people.
Mr. Atiemo said, “we will continue to leverage our cutting-edge technology, enhance our logistics capabilities, and forge new partnerships to reach even more communities and ensure no one is left behind.”
Zipline, which now operates six distribution centres nationwide, has 27 drones at its Omenako distribution centre in the Eastern Region alone and carries out an average of 95 deliveries in a day.
He said Zipline looks forward to working closely with the US and Ghanaian governments and other development partners to evolve new ways of working with the private sector, integrating new technology into the existing ecosystem, including pay-for-performance partnerships to facilitate the transition to sustainable models of development.
US Ambassador to Ghana, Virginia Palmer who graced the occasion commended Zipline for the feat chalked in the past four years
“None of us imagined the COVID vaccines and the COVID-19 pandemic when Zipline was being founded and the tremendous impact you made in getting those vaccines out to people so they can resume their lives is enormous,” she said.
US Ambassador to Ghana, Virginia Palmer noted that bilateral arrangements are in place between Zipline and the US towards the rapid development of the firm’s infrastructure to scale up access to medical supplies and commercial goods in West Africa.
“The US Trade and Development Agency signed an agreement with Zipline earlier this year to fund feasibility studies to develop the infrastructure for the rapid delivery of medicines and commercial goods via drones across Ghana and West Africa,” she said.
Deputy Minister of Health, Mahama Asei Seini said the partnership between Zipline and the Ministry of Health has yielded great mutual benefits thus expressing the government’s commitment to support the company to diversify.
By Jamila Akweley Okertchiri