Magellan Rx collaborates with Zipline to deliver prescription medications by autonomous aircraft

Operation reduces barriers for patients with complex health conditions in North Carolina

Magellan Rx collaborates with Zipline to deliver prescription medications by autonomous aircraft

Magellan Rx will be able to deliver prescription medications directly to patients’ homes via Zipline’s autonomous aircraft. Image credit: Zipline

Magellan Rx – a full-service pharmacy benefits manager (PBM) – on Wednesday announced a partnership with Dublin-based Zipline, an international instant logistics leader.

The partnership will make Magellan Rx the PBM to deliver specialty and traditional medications through Zipline, which designs, manufactures and operates the world's largest automated on-demand delivery service. Through automated on-demand delivery, healthcare organisations and patients can receive the medications they need in as little as fifteen minutes. Magellan Rx is the full-service pharmacy benefits management division of Magellan Health, Inc.

Mostafa Kamal, chief executive officer at Magellan Rx Management, said, "The Magellan Rx Management team is thrilled to collaborate with Zipline and be the first PBM to deliver specialty and traditional medications via drone."

The partnership will enable Magellan Rx to deliver prescription medications, including specialty medications that treat chronic, complex conditions, directly to patients' homes via Zipline's autonomous aircraft.

The option will initially be available to Magellan Rx members in the North Carolina service area and will provide a consumer-centric approach to support patients on their healthcare journey.

Under the partnership, Magellan Rx expects to begin operations in 2022, pending approvals from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Initially, it will operate from Zipline's existing distribution centre in Kannapolis, North Carolina, which is capable of serving customers within 7,800 square miles.

"Reliable, on-demand deliveries with Zipline help us advance our existing consumer-centric approach where patients can get the critical medications they need to be delivered, on their time, when they need them, right to their own homes," Kamal added.

Keller Rinaudo, founder and CEO at Zipline, said, "Instant logistics can transform health outcomes for those that need it most. With Magellan Rx Management, we're working to reimagine the patient experience, bring care closer to home, and ultimately help patients treat and manage chronic and complex health conditions."

Magellan Rx Management is joining a growing number of organizations including health systems, governments, and leading global companies that are partnering with Zipline around the world. To date, Zipline has flown over 16 million miles, completed over 2,35,000 commercial deliveries, and will soon operate in five countries. On average, Zipline makes a delivery once every four minutes.

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