Modi government’s new policy will soon make it easier to transport human organs for transplant

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Updated: January 16, 2019 8:09:27 PM

Drone flying, Drones, Drones rules, drones details, drone flying rules, drones indiaThere are five categories of drones categorized by weight, namely nano, micro, small, medium and large. (Reuters)

Updated drone policy proposed by the government is set to revolutionise the way human organs are transferred between hospitals in the country, saving precious time and lives. The proposal is vital for saving human lives as it will remove the need for creating special green corridors between the place of harvesting of organ and its destination. It is crucial in the medical field as after harvesting from a donor, human organs like heart and liver must be transplanted in a recipient’s body within hours.

At present, traffic police and city authorities create green corridors for such ambulances carrying human organs for immediate transplant. These green corridors are created by restricting traffic movement on the roads between the source and destination, for example between airport and a particular hospital where harvested organ is to be delivered. Use of drones for delivery of human organs will remove the need for creating such corridors.

“Under the commercial use, the government proposes to permit use of drones for transfer of human organs between hospitals,” Prashant Prakhar of law firm Nishith Desai Associates, who was closely involved in preparing the draft of Drone 2.0 policy, told Financial Express Online.

For the first time the government has proposed to allow commercial use of drones and their operations beyond the visual line of sight under the draft of Drone 2.0 policy unveiled by Jayant Sinha, minister of state for civil aviation in Mumbai on Tuesday, which will also cover transfer of organs between hospitals.

Ministry of civil aviation has received representations from several hospitals seeking permission to use drones for speedy transportation of organs as it is vital for saving lives. The ministry then incorporated the proposal in the draft of Drone 2.0 policy. The policy also envisages setting up of drone-ports which can be used for take off and landing of drones.

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These two restrictions, restriction on the commercial use of drones and the condition to fly a drone within visual range were considered the two biggest impediments in promoting the commercial use of drones in the country. Drone Policy 1.0, unveiled by civil aviation minister Suresh Prabhu in August last year did not permit the drone operations beyond the visual line of sight.

Civil aviation ministry will soon invite comments of stakeholders on the draft of Drone 2.0 policy. These inputs will be used in finalising the Drone 2.0 policy which will herald the era of commercial use of drones in the country.

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