Apian has launched Project Dreadnought, funded by the UK Space Agency and European Space Agency, to help the NHS in its fight against COVID-19.

The pandemic has highlighted challenges in NHS supply chain logistics and there has never been a better time to create a faster, more dependable and environmentally-friendly method of transporting medical supplies. Project Dreadnought, which is a six-month trial based at Mid and South Essex NHS Foundation Trust, will create a medical drone delivery service to fly COVID-19 samples to labs more regularly, reliably and quickly than ground couriers. This can break chains of viral transmission by taking humans out-of-the-loop, protecting key NHS staff while speeding up testing turnaround times.

Apian will scale the project by creating the NHS Air Grid (NAG), a network of secure air corridors designed to enable safe drone delivery across the UK. In time, the drones will carry other pathology samples, as well as medical equipment, medications and blood packs.

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