Critical Values Highlight: Drones in Flight Now Delivering Medical Samples

May 07, 2018

Serving resource-limited countries to ensure they have proper medical care is a challenge. Add to that fact transporting laboratory samples to obtain diagnoses over terrain that has low-quality or no roads at all, and improving the health of people in need becomes an even greater challenge.

As new technologies emerge, getting samples safely and unharmed to a laboratory when there is not one nearby is one of the issues being tackled by one of the latest pieces of machinery to make headlines: the drone.

In the latest issue of Critical Values, Senior Editor Molly V. Strzelecki talked with Timothy Amukele, MD, PhD, lead author on a paper published in the November issue of AJCP, “Drone Transport of Chemistry and Hematology Samples over Long Distances,” about this new method of transportation for medical purposes and assesses its value to the laboratory. 

Dr. Amukele is the lab director for Johns Hopkins Bayview Hospital and an assistant professor of pathology at Johns Hopkins Medicine. He also serves as the medical director for Makerere University-Johns Hopkins University Research Collaboration Core Laboratory in Uganda.

Read more about the emerging role of drones in laboratory medicine.