UPS and CVS Team Up to Use Drones to Deliver Customers’ Prescriptions

The United Parcel Service (UPS) and CVS Pharmacy are teaming up and using drones to deliver prescriptions to residents of The Village retirement community in Florida. This service will use Matternet’s M2 drones and is being conducted with the authorization of the Federal Aviation Administration.
The drones will begin flight in early May, and this flight will be less than a mile delivered to a pickup location near the retirement community. The service currently runs through a single CVS pharmacy location, but it could expand to two more locations in the area.
This is not the first, as there have been drone deliveries in the United States from UPS, as UPS has had government approval to operate a “drone airline” since October. Since that approval, the delivery service has done thousands of deliveries to retirement communities in North Carolina.
“Our new drone delivery service will help CVS provide safe and efficient deliveries of medicines to this large retirement community, enabling residents to receive medications without leaving their homes,” said Scott Price, UPS chief strategy and transformation officer, in a statement. “UPS is committed to playing its part in fighting COVID-19, and this is another way we can support our healthcare customers and individuals with innovative solutions.”
Both UPS and CVS announced plans last year to explore the use of drone delivery. The two companies first completed their first drone delivery of medical prescriptions from a CVS pharmacy in Cary, North Carolina, in November 2019.
“Now more than ever, it’s important that our customers have access to their prescriptions,” said Jon Roberts, executive vice president and chief operating officer of CVS Health in the same press release. “In addition to our in-store pickup, free delivery services and drive through pickup, this drone delivery service provides an innovative method to reach some of our customers.”
This partnership with CVS is not all UPS has done to help those in need during the pandemic, as they had previously, among other things, donated $297,000 to nonprofits in the Louisville, Kentucky area as well as masks. These regional grants went specifically to:

  • One Louisville: COVID-19 Response Fund - $100,000
  • Volunteers of America - $25,000
  • Uspiritus (Bellewood & Brooklawn) - $25,000
  • Ronald McDonald House - $25,000
  • Association of Community Ministries - $25,000
  • SOS International - $25,000
  • Waterstep - $25,000
  • Family Scholar House - $25,000
  • Kentucky Refugee Ministries - $17,000
  • Masjid Bilal Islamic Center - $5,000

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