Last week, UPS formed a new partnership with drone developer Matternet to deliver medical samples via drone. The delivery program will take place in Raleigh, North Carolina at WakeMed’s hospital, with program oversight by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT).

Currently, medical samples and specimens are transported by courier cars, but the drone delivery system could provide an option for on-demand and same-day delivery, the ability to avoid traffic or accident delays on roadways, increase efficiency, lower costs, and an improved patient experience.

WakeMed President and CEO, Donald Gintzig said, “[We are] committed to innovation, and we believe drone technology has the potential to achieve transformative improvements in health and health care delivery.”

The goal of this program is to determine how drones can be applied to improve transport services at other hospitals and facilities across the country.