DRONES LOADED WITH 10 LITERS of insecticides are being deployed, by Rwanda’s government, to spray mosquito-breeding sites in the country, to kill mosquitoes at the larval stage. The same way the government has been using drones to deliver urgent bloods supplies to hospitals in remote areas of the country.
Delivering bloods to needy patients in Rwanda is by road. Often, this leads to delay in reaching remote areas, which could, also, lead to likely deaths. A company in Rwanda, Zipiline, developed an innovative drone solution to deliver bloods to remote areas of the country. It is now a project other African countries are envying.
Zipline launches drones carrying bloods to remote hospitals in Rwanda into the air. The drones arrive their destinations, and descend 30fts height and drop the package, which floats gently to the ground with the support of a paper parachutes. The doctors receive test message to inform them about the arrival of the bloods. The drones return to base.
On fighting malaria, Head Of Malaria Division at Rwanda Biomedical Centre, Aimable Mbituyumuremyi, said the drones, loaded with 10 litres of insecticides, kill mosquitoes at their larval stage. “The unmanned aerial vehicles are going to support the existing efforts that include mosquito nets and housing sprays to fight anopheles which spread malaria.”
He said: “Now we also want to fight these mosquitoes from their sources. The drones will spray a sort of larvicide, which kills that type of mosquitoes.” According to Rwanda’s Biomedical Centre, about 3.9 million people were diagnosed with malaria between 2018 and 2019.
Mass spraying of mosquitoes in Rwanda is targeted at specific areas with highest cases, and safe for humans. Mbituyumuremyi said: “The drugs which will be sprayed over the marshlands and swamps are verified to be harmless to the people, farms and environment. These substances are produced from bacilli bacteria which are normal in the environment and approved by the World Health Organisation.”
He said the efforts will further reduce infections. And the Biomedical Centre said malaria cases dropped from 4.8 million in 2017, and the number of deaths dropped from 660 in 2016 to 260 in 2019.