Zipline to deliver vaccines, medications in Ivory Coast
The partnership involves the construction and operation of four distribution centers to store and dispatch, on demand, medications, treatments and materials to over 1,000 health facilities around the country.
San Francisco-based Zipline, an automated on-demand delivery service, has expanded its footprint in West Africa by joining hands with the department of health, public hygiene and universal health coverage of Ivory Coast - the 6th country for Zipline.
The partnership involves the construction and operation of four distribution centers to store and dispatch, on demand, medications, treatments and materials to over 1,000 health facilities around the country. The first centre is expected to be operational by the end of 2022, according to an official statement from Zipline.
“Our revolutionary instant logistics technology, which is being deployed around the world, will vastly improve access and even distribution of medical products in remote and hard-to-reach areas,” said Israel Bimpe, Africa Go-To-Market director, Zipline. “It is for this reason that we are excited about this partnership which, on the whole, will improve the lives of our fellow citizens, leaving no one behind in terms of access to medical products.”
The agreement aims to support the ministry's vision to achieve universal health coverage by ensuring equitable access to blood products, vaccines, and medical products, especially in rural areas.
“Achieving universal health coverage is one of the ministry's priorities and we believe this bold move to partner with Zipline is a sure way to achieve it,” said Pierre N'Gou Dimba, Minister of Health, of Public Hygiene and Universal Health Coverage . “We have assessed the capacity of Zipline, their operations in other African countries with similar needs as ours, and we truly believe this partnership will help us remove barriers to accessing health care and creating a more equitable and efficient health system across the country. “
Zipline will be the sole supplier for selected health facilities in many remote regions of Ivory Coast - routine and stockout-response deliveries of medicines, vaccines and blood. Additionally, the company will offer support to Ivorian organisations running emergency response services.
Many local service providers will be directly engaged by Zipline, which is expected to boost the local economy.
Zipline recently completed the first long-range drone delivery of authorised mRNA Covid-19 vaccines requiring ultra-cold-chain in Ghana.