Zipline and Intermountain Healthcare bring consumer-centric care closer to home with on-demand patient deliveries
This week, we announced a partnership with Intermountain Healthcare, a major healthcare system that serves patients in Utah, Idaho and Nevada. Together, we’ll complete medication home deliveries via autonomous aircraft to patients in the Salt Lake City metro area.
It’s an exciting moment for us, and for Intermountain Healthcare, which has long been committed to transforming patient care. But more than that, it marks an exciting milestone for healthcare delivery in the U.S.
Though we’ve been establishing, growing and proving our instant logistics infrastructure in Rwanda, Ghana and even the U.S. for five years now, this marks the first time we’ll be bringing our service to the U.S. at this scale. It opens up new possibilities — for greater accessibility, more affordable costs and better patient outcomes — at both an individual and systemic level. Here’s what patients and healthcare systems can expect as instant logistics takes flight in the U.S.
FOR PATIENTS: CARE WHEN, WHERE AND HOW THEY WANT IT
Intermountain Healthcare believes that patient care should be delivered on the patient’s own terms — and they’re leading the charge toward a more consumer-centric care model. With automated, on-demand delivery, Intermountain can bring care closer to home and advance this mission.
Convenience tends to be the first benefit that comes to people’s minds; and it’s true, the ability to receive medications at home, whenever you need them, is the height of convenience. But the benefits patients can expect from automated, on-demand delivery extend well beyond that:
- Enhanced Access: Patients aren’t always in a position to go get their medications themselves. Take, for example, a single mom who may have to pack up three kids to go get her prescription from the local pharmacy. The ability to receive medication at home streamlines this process and ensures patients have access to the care they need, when and where they need it.
- Decreased Risk to Patients: Consider an immunocompromised patient still wary of venturing out to their local pharmacy as the pandemic continues. Automated, on-demand delivery brings much-needed care closer to home, mitigating patient risk while improving outcomes.
- Lower Cost of Care: Home delivery can help prevent unnecessary doctor, hospital and urgent care trips, and also holds the potential to lower patient costs — advancing Intermountain Healthcare’s mission of providing high-quality but affordable care.
- Improved Patient Outcomes: Care at home offers patients a number of benefits — the convenience of on-demand delivery in a set window, accessibility and affordability. Together, these factors can improve medication adherence and lower patient risk, ultimately fueling better patient outcomes and healthier communities.
FOR HEALTHCARE ORGANIZATIONS: SYSTEMIC TRANSFORMATION
Net net: instant logistics powers more consumer-centric, and more effective, patient experiences. But its impact can also be felt at the systemic level.
Our healthcare systems have changed dramatically over the last 20 months. The infrastructure and solutions we relied on back in 2019 are, in many cases, no longer cutting it in 2021. New challenges require new solutions, and instant logistics can help fill some of the gaps.
One significant opportunity for this infrastructure lies in telehealth. Telehealth appointments exploded at the onset of COVID-19, and have settled at a staggering 38 times the pre-pandemic rate; millions of people now rely on virtual care to stay safe and healthy. But virtual appointments can only do so much good if, after receiving a diagnosis, a patient still has to venture out into a crowded pharmacy to secure their medication. Home deliveries can ensure a safe, fully remote experience — enabling patients to get the care they need, without incurring any additional risk.
The systemic impact is most pronounced when we can roll out automated, on-demand delivery at scale — and with Intermountain Healthcare, that’s exactly the plan. We’ll continue to grow our service over the next few years until, ultimately, we’re able to serve approximately 90% of patient homes in the Salt Lake City metro area.
After seeing the impact instant logistics can have in our work around the world, we’re ready to hit the ground running to unlock these possibilities for patients in the U.S. If you’re interested in hearing more about our upcoming work, our co-founder and CEO Keller Rinaudo and Intermountain’s President and CEO Dr. Marc Harrison will be breaking down the new partnership and what it means for patients next week at Reuters Total Health. Tune in on November 17 to catch their discussion.