Autonomous UPS drones begin prescription home delivery service

UPS drone delivers medicine from CVS straight to customers' homes

UPS drone delivers medicine from CVS straight to customers' homes

The flights launched from a CVS store in Cary and flew to CVS customer's homes. That permits Flight Forward to collect payment for drone deliveries and to fly as many drones supported by as many operators as necessary to meet customer demand. The company said in October that it will initially bring its drone delivery service to USA hospitals and branch out to other industries from there.

'Delivering prescriptions by drone directly to homes could greatly improve the patient experience for CVS customers'.

The companies say the deliveries mark another milestone in their collaboration to develop a variety of drone delivery use cases, including business-to-consumer operating models.

UPS and its Flight Forward division has begun delivering prescriptions to paying customers via drone.

Using a M2 drone, the prescriptions were lowered down to two separate destinations via a cable while the unmanned aerial vehicle hovered 20 feet above each home.

Deliveries by drone will be particularly useful for individuals who aren't able to drive to the store themselves, such as the elderly and anyone who is sick or injured.

In September, UPS became the first firm to win the broadest FAA certification to operate a drone airline.

"CVS is exploring many types of delivery options for urban, suburban and rural markets", Hourican added.

Advanced FAA authorizations, however, allow the worldwide business to broaden its program beyond healthcare networks.

The FAA approved only the first two deliveries in Cary.

UPS spokesman Kyle Peterson said these flights weren't the start of an ongoing service but rather the beginning of an evaluation with CVS.

UPS Chief Executive Officer David Abney is betting that drone deliveries will grow quickly, especially in rural areas, and is investing to keep the courier competitive with Amazon.com Inc., Alphabet Inc. and FedEx Corp.

Initially, Flight Forward will work with the healthcare industry, using drones to carry critical packages around hospital campuses and prescriptions to customers' homes.

Richard Stradling covers transportation for The News & Observer. Also, #census2020. He's been a reporter or editor for 32 years, including the last 20 at The N&O.

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