Amazon Takes to the Skies For Pharmacy Deliveries

Drone service within 60 minutes now available in College Station, Texas
Emily Crowe
Multimedia Editor
Emily Crowe
Amazon Pharmacy drone delivery
Amazon Pharmacy customers in the Texas city of College Station can now have their prescriptions delivered within an hour.

Amazon Pharmacy customers in College Station, Texas, can now get their prescription medications delivered via drone delivery within 60 minutes of placing their order. Those customers will have access to more than 500 medications, including those that treat common conditions such as flu, asthma and pneumonia.

Amazon’s drones have already been in action throughout College Station since December 2022, and the company is hoping to enhance health outcomes with this new rapid access to care.

“We’re taught from the first days of medical school that there is a golden window that matters in clinical medicine,” said Dr. Vin Gupta, chief medical officer of Amazon Pharmacy. “That’s the time between when a patient feels unwell and when they’re able to get treatment. We’re working hard at Amazon to dramatically narrow the golden window from diagnosis to treatment, and drone delivery marks a significant step forward. Whether it’s an infectious disease or respiratory illness, early intervention can be critical to improving patient outcomes.”

The drones have built-in sense-and-avoid technology that uses sensors and cameras to navigate around people, pets and power lines. Upon arrival at the customer’s home, the drone lowers itself above a delivery marker and releases the package, rises back up to altitude and returns to the delivery center.

“Our drones fly over traffic, eliminating the excess time a customer’s package might spend in transit on the road,” said Calsee Hendrickson, director of product and program management at Prime Air. “That’s the beauty of drone delivery, and medications were the first thing our customers said they also want delivered quickly via drone. Speed and convenience top the wish list for health purchases.”

As for Amazon Pharmacy, the service currently offers same-day delivery in Austin, Indianapolis, Miami, Phoenix and Seattle, and customers have 24/7 access to a pharmacist to discuss questions about their medications.

Seattle-based Amazon is No. 2 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2023 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America. PG also named the company one of its Retailers of the Century.

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