This Medical Drone Could Save Your Life One Day

Ambulance Drone 1 photo
Photo: TU Delft
In a world where cities are more and more crowded and traffic jams are extremely frequent, a 10 minute delay could be a matter of life and death. This is why dutch industrial engineer Alex Monton believes future drones should also be used for medical purposes. He has designed the Ambulance Drone, an all-purpose medical toolkit that can be automatically flown to any emergency situation.
Imagine your elder relative suddenly faints in the middle of the street and instead of waiting for help to come you could save him yourself. That is pretty much the idea behind the young engineer’s drone project. As a graduate of the Delft University of Technology, he custom designed this UAV to deliver first aid in case of emergency. While the patient awaits for the ambulance to arrive, it brings an emergency kit to the person in need.

The Ambulance Drone has a new type of frame that is compact flying toolbox containing essential supplies for advanced life support. The first prototype focuses on the delivery of an Automated Defibrillator (AED), but future items will also be able to carry medication and even Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation aids.

The chances of survival are 10 times bigger

According to Monton, in the European Union around 800,000 people per year suffer from a cardiac arrest and only 8% survive this incident. “The main reason for this high number of casualties is the relatively slow response time of emergency services (approximately 10 minutes). Brain death and permanent death start to occur in just 4 to 6 minutes,” the young engineer explains.

As opposed to a normal ambulance vehicle, the Ambulance Drone is able to deliver defibrillation to any patient in a 12 square km (4.6 square miles) area within 1 minute. At that speed, survival rates could be as high as 80%. The drone is also designed with a two-way, video supported communication channel which allows for the emergency operators and the first responders to communicate. This could also improve first care and even save lives.

The Ambulance Drone is the result of Alex’ Master Graduation thesis research project which he presented two days ago. He claims he will be looking for funding to continue the development of this project.

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