In recent times we’re seeing how drones can be used to do all sorts of things beyond just photography and videography, such as keeping an eye on crops, search and rescue, and delivery. It also seems that drones could be used to help combat diseases, such as over in Zanzibar, Tanzania.

In a report from Quartz, Aberystwyth University and Tanzania’s Zanzibar Malaria Elimination Programme have teamed up on an initiative to help combat malaria in the region. How this is done is through the use of drones which will be used to help survey malaria hot zones and identify areas with water where the malaria mosquitos could be breeding.

This is more efficient than current methods because according to the team, a single drone is capable of surveying a 30 hectare rice paddy in as little as 20 minutes, which means that they’ll be able to spray and kill off the mosquitos in a relatively short amount of time. There is also no need for specialty drones as an off-the-shelf model like the DJI Phantom 3 was used.

However there are some concerns about the use of drones, such as whether it could interfere with aircrafts and birdlife, and also the possible perceptions of drones being used in warfare, but the team is hoping that by working with the village elders and explaining what these drones are used for that it will quell any fears or doubts.

Filed in Medical >Robots. Read more about drones and Health.

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