[Skip to Navigation]
Sign In
Views 789
Citations 0
Surgical Innovation
January 15, 2020

Using Unmanned Aircraft to Save Lives: Learning to Fly

Author Affiliations
  • 1University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore
JAMA Surg. 2020;155(4):355-356. doi:10.1001/jamasurg.2019.4925

Despite the remarkable progress in transplant over 65 years, organ transportation has not been innovated. The current system is challenged by expense, time, and safety. Unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) capable of on-demand life-urgent delivery of organs, blood, and medications may represent a pathway toward saving lives in transplant and beyond.1

In the last 5 years, dramatic advances in UAS technologies have been realized. Unmanned aircraft system technologies allow for ranges of more than 1000 miles, speeds faster than 150 miles per hour, and vertical takeoff and landing. Further, artificial intelligence technologies have ushered in a new era of autonomous flight, allowing for pilotless travel. Our group recently showed that UAS technologies can be used to move human organs.1

Add or change institution
Limit 200 characters
Limit 25 characters
Conflicts of Interest Disclosure

Identify all potential conflicts of interest that might be relevant to your comment.

Conflicts of interest comprise financial interests, activities, and relationships within the past 3 years including but not limited to employment, affiliation, grants or funding, consultancies, honoraria or payment, speaker's bureaus, stock ownership or options, expert testimony, royalties, donation of medical equipment, or patents planned, pending, or issued.

Err on the side of full disclosure.

If you have no conflicts of interest, check "No potential conflicts of interest" in the box below. The information will be posted with your response.

Not all submitted comments are published. Please see our commenting policy for details.

Limit 140 characters
Limit 3600 characters or approximately 600 words