Bayelsa Partners Sterling Bank, Zipline, Others to Expand Medical Access

Nume Ekeghe

Bayelsa State Government has partnered with Sterling Bank Plc, Zipline, a global leader in instant logistics, Drugstoc and Health Spaces to implement a transformation agenda in the state’s healthcare system under a Health Supply Chain Consortium.

In a statement made available by sterling bank, the memorandum of understanding (MoU), entails that the Health Supply Chain Consortium will invest in the transformation of Bayelsa State healthcare supply chain by procuring all required pharmaceutical supplies, developing best-in-class warehousing infrastructure, provide comprehensive last mile logistic solutions and ensure revenue optimisation for the state.

Speaking at the signing of the MoU in Yenogoa, the Bayelsa State capital today, Governor Duoye Diri said: “We remain well committed to delivering an aggressive agenda of building a dependable health delivery system in Bayelsa, part of which has given birth to this partnership.

“We envisage that this partnership will remain one of the most significant ways of removing the access barriers that mitigates easy delivery of medical commodities to our health facilities,” adding that, “Even distribution of on-demand medical commodities to remote and hard-to-reach areas do not only safe lives but also become a significant way of managing waste that happens as a result of expiry of medicines.”

By this agreement, Zipline will establish a distribution hub in Bayelsa State for the introduction, operation and maintenance of a just-in-time instant logistics solution to ensure that essential drugs, blood and a selection of other life-saving medical supplies are available to the state health facilities in Bayelsa State.

When completed, the service will operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week, day or night, from the distribution centre, which will be equipped with Zipline’s proprietary fleet of drones.

Also speaking, Divisional Head, Health Finance and Education sectors of Sterling Bank, Mr. Obinna Ukachukwu added: “Our membership and role in this consortium resounds our commitment to transforming the healthcare sector in Nigeria; one partnership and project at a time.

“With each transformative collaboration, we seek to take the Nigerian population one step closer to a healthcare system that meets their needs at every turn. Each member of this consortium is working towards one crucial goal for the Bayelsa State Government and her people; to make healthcare better. This vision drives the H in our HEART strategy and is the sole reason we are in this business.”

Zipline CEO, Keller Rinaudo said, “Zipline is pleased to partner with the people, government of Bayelsa and Sterling Bank to advance instant, autonomous healthcare delivery across the state.”

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