Twelve health centres in the North East Region cut off by the recent floods in the area are receiving medical supplies through the Zipline drone medical delivery service.

The Bagre Dam spillage coupled with heavy rainfall in the area led to the destruction of roads and bridges in the Region, making these communities inaccessible by road.

The District Health Director of Mamprugu Moaduri, Abubakar Adams has said that the severity of this year’s flooding has exceeded that of previous years and has made it impossible to reach victims of the floods who may need medical attention.

“This year’s flooding has actually been more severe as compared to last year’s. And most of the places, it cuts between communities, so where our facilities are, people have other difficulties in wanting to access health services”.

According to him, out of desperation, residents in these cut-off communities may begin to rely on untrained health professionals for their medical needs which could lead to dire health complications.

“As at now, those who are cut off, they have difficulty in accessing health services. And our fear is that they can resort to unapproved health services from untrained health personnel in the district. So that is what I’m looking at,” he said.

However, despite the severity of the flooding and the difficulty in accessing these communities by road, the timely intervention of Zipline, a medical drone delivery service, has helped in conveying essential drugs to 12 health centres in the area; something they have been unable to do hitherto.

“With the support of Zipline, we’ve been able to get medical supplies to the district as compared to last year whereby we were struggling; there was no regular supply of medicines to the district at this season. But this year though the flooding is more severe as compared to last year, many of our health facilities have drugs and they continue to supply medical services to the community.”

He stated that Zipline’s efforts in supplying drugs to the cut off medical facilities have ensured that the health centres do not suffer drug shortages like they did in previous years.

“And this year the cut off impact is not really felt at the health facilities, but it is being felt in the communities, in the sense that because Zipline will drop medicines or essential medicines and emergency medicines to the facilities, we don’t actually feel it.”

However, even though the medical facilities no longer have to deal with a lack of medical supply, the challenge of reaching the residents in their communities remains a challenge.

“But how to reach out to communities that have been cut off in the district is our challenge because they can’t access our services and we also cannot reach them,” he bemoaned.

The Fulfillment Operations Lead of Zipeline, Wale Wale, Seneca Samuel says Zipline currently provides drone medical delivery service to 256 health centres in communities that have been completely cut off in the northern sector.

“Right now we have a lot of facilities that have been cut off by the spillage of the Bagre Dam and the constant rainfalls and most of the road networks are also bad because of the huge rainfalls. Lots of the facilities are hard to reach and completely cut off and there’s no vehicle that can reach these facilities. We are currently serving most of these facilities solely so we are sending each and every medication that they are supposed to have for them.”

Some communities cut off by the floods include Gbintidi, Sakrogu, Magoma etc.