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Walmart experimenting with drone delivery of COVID-19 test kits

Walmart has launched a test program aimed at delivering COVID-19 test kits to customers' doorsteps using drones.

BENTONVILLE, Ark — Walmart announced on Tuesday that it would be running a pilot program delivering at-home COVID-19 test kits to customers' doorsteps via a drone.

In a partnership with Quest Diagnostics and DroneUp, a nationwide drone services provider, Walmart will launch trial deliveries of COVID-19 test kits in North Las Vegas on Tuesday (Sept. 22) and Cheektowaga, New York, in early October, according to a press release from Walmart. 

Those who qualify for drone delivery of COVID-19 test kits must live in a home within a 1-mile radius of designated Walmart stores. Packages will land on the driveway, front sidewalk, or backyard of the customer’s home, depending on where there are cars and trees. 

Tests will be a self-administered nasal swabs and samples can be sent to Quest Diagnostics for evaluation using a included prepaid shipping label.  

"There’s a lot we can learn from our drone delivery pilots to help determine what roles drones can play in pandemic response, health care delivery and retail. We hope drone delivery of self-collection kits will shape contactless testing capabilities on a larger scale and continue to bolster the innovative ways Walmart plans to use drone delivery in the future."

Earlier this month Walmart announced similar test drone delivery programs of grocery and household products in North Carolina and Northwest Arkansas. 

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