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Drones Could Give Heart Patients Fast Access to Defibrillators in Remote Areas

In the future, aerial drones could be used to deliver defibrillators and other medical devices to patients in remote areas, according to Definetz, a German non-profit organization. The group is developing a medical drone called Defikopter. After being launched by a specialized smartphone app, the drone can fly a defibrillator to a heart attack victim, allowing for fast treatment.

Aerial drones could provide a new means of delivering medical devices like defibrillators. Image credit: Height Tech

When an individual launches the Defikopter app, the app sends the GPS coordinates of the victim over a cellular data connection. Based on these coordinates, a drone will be dispatched to a person's location. A drone can fly approximately 40 miles per hour. A single drone could traverse an area with a radius measuring six miles; it could potentially reach a patient anywhere in that area in 4.5 minutes or less.

While the invention has received praise from medical services in Germany, the system is still under development. As of now, Definetz and its partner Height Tech haven't issued further information about the release of the device.

"We'll have to see how much these drones can help," notes one representative for the German emergency services union. According to one German news site, the system will carry a price tag of $26,000.

For now, using the device could be a problem. Since all unmanned flying vehicles in Germany must be supervised, an automated aerial drone would not be legal under existing laws.

 

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