Instant logistics leader Zipline and Kisumu County, a member of the Lake Region Economic Bloc (LREB), recently signed an agreement to use Zipline’s industry-leading warehousing facility and autonomous aircraft technology to store and deliver COVID-19 vaccines, blood products, and other medical commodities to Kisumu County health facilities.
The agreement calls for the establishment and operation of a Zipline distribution hub in Kisumu County – the third largest city in Kenya after the capital Nairobi and the coastal city of Mombasa – which will serve as the base of operations for the Zipline uncrewed aerial system (UAS) and Zipline services, capable of serving health projects and facilities in 16 counties across western Kenya.
The Governor of Kisumu County, H.E. Prof Anyang’ Nyong’o, said, “We have made some significant efforts in improving the overall healthcare delivery of our people. It is heartwarming to note, therefore, that our mission of achieving universal health coverage is on course with this historic partnership which will ensure that no one is left behind as a result of their location”.
Commenting on the partnership, the Chairman of LREB and County Governor of Kakamega said, “it is our commitment as LREB to deliver an aggressive agenda of building a robust health delivery system that will not only serve a few but the vast majority of people within LREB Counties. Zipline’s technology is one we can resort to in accelerating the transformation of our health systems to provide timely healthcare solutions to the people on whose mandate we serve”.
“We’ve seen how automated, on-demand delivery can transform healthcare systems to make them more efficient, effective and equitable,” said Keller Rinaudo, co-founder and CEO of Zipline. “Zipline’s expansion into Kenya, our seventh country, in partnership with Kisumu County, is a pivotal step forward to expand these important benefits to more communities around the world.”
Daniel Marfo, Senior Vice President for Zipline Africa, also stated that Zipline will speed the distribution hub construction process to enable timely access to healthcare for life-threatening illnesses and immunizations.
“This Zipline and Kisumu County partnership is a powerful collaboration that will solidify transformational logistics medical delivery in Western Kenya and put Kenya on the forefront of health excellence”, he said.
Following the launch of Zipline’s UAS delivery operations from its distribution hub in Kisumu County, the parties will work together in a project operations phase to provide medical commodities, including COVID-19 vaccine doses, to health facilities within the operational area in accordance with standard operating procedures and terms of service.
Zipline’s presence in Africa has seen it create commercial alliances in Rwanda, Ghana, Nigeria, Côte d’Ivoire, and now Kenya, where it aims to carry out an industrious technology-driven revolution in the health sectors.
The transformational company designs, manufactures and operates the world’s largest automated on-demand delivery service, which has completed over 235,000 commercial deliveries so far, with a delivery made once every four minutes on average.