DENVER, Oct. 11, 2010 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Air Methods Corporation (Nasdaq:AIRM) announced today its Products Division has unveiled the new EZ Lift 1300 wheeled patient stretcher at the annual Air Medical Transport Conference (AMTC). Air Methods recognizes it as the first and only wheeled stretcher available for modern single-engine helicopter emergency medical service (HEMS) aircraft. This first EZ Lift 1300 is installed in a Eurocopter EC130 airframe which will initially serve the company's hospital-based customer Baptist Life Flight at its Evergreen, Alabama base.

"Air Methods' Products Division is very excited to introduce the EZ Lift 1300 patient stretcher into the air medical industry and happy to collaborate with Baptist Life Flight as the launch customer," stated Tom Curtis, Vice President, Products Division. "Through a combination of customer feedback and our comprehensive in-house experience, our team recognized this unmet need in the marketplace and was able to develop and deliver. We are confident the design will be of tremendous value to single-engine HEMS programs and we will continue to work diligently to certify the stretcher in other airframes as well."

Composed of rugged, durable construction, the EZ Lift 1300 has rotating/translating wheels for easier loading. When secured in the aircraft the unit can translate forward and back 12 inches for easy patient access via a release latch that is convenient to the clinical crew. Patient care is further enhanced as the patient head can be elevated to 85 degrees during landing and takeoff. During unloading, the folding undercarriage drops down and securely locks so the clinical crew can wheel the patient without transitioning the patient to another apparatus. The stretcher also is equipped with four, rugged castering wheels each with brakes. Additionally, the design of the EZ Lift 1300 will allow it to load and secure into a ground ambulance.