News release

New Equipment Modernizes Ambulance Fleet

The government is investing another $3.5 million to install state-of-the-art equipment in more ambulances in Nova Scotia, making them safer for patients and paramedics.

The purchase of 78 power stretchers and 65 power loaders means that by the end of the year all Emergency Health Services (EHS) ambulances and patient transfer units will be outfitted with this modern technology.

“Nova Scotians should be able to count on our emergency medical system for urgent care and much, much more,” said Health and Wellness Minister Michelle Thompson. “This new technology will help paramedics provide life-saving medical treatment anytime, anywhere, and make the experience safer and more comfortable for patients.”

Power stretchers and power loaders allow patients to be lifted into ambulances with the push of a button. The equipment will be delivered over the next six weeks from the manufacturer, Stryker Canada, and the stretchers will be added to vehicles immediately. To ensure there is no disruption to patient care, loaders will be installed during planned vehicle maintenance between now and the end of the year.


In my 27-year career, I have seen many advancements in the paramedicine field, but I would say that the introduction of power loaders and power stretchers is the single most significant improvement to our practice. This tool has drastically decreased lifting and lowering injuries among paramedics and careers will be extended by many years with this initiative. Just knowing there is a power load system in the ambulance relieves a lot of worries for paramedics. Shelley Moore, New Glasgow paramedic

Stryker is pleased to support the people of Nova Scotia and the lifesaving teams who care for them, as together we continue to navigate the complexity and challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. Lindsay Williams, Vice-President and Managing Director, Stryker Canada

Quick Facts:

  • there are 150 emergency ambulances and 15 patient transfer units in the EHS fleet staffed by 1,150 paramedics and 45 transport operators
  • EHS paramedics respond to about 180,000 calls every year for emergencies and patient transfers
  • the purchase completes the $8.5-million upgrade that began in 2019 and to date 86 ambulances have been outfitted with power stretchers and loaders
  • installation of this equipment was a recommendation to the government in the review of the EHS system by international consultant Fitch and Associates

Additional Resources:

News Release – New Equipment to Improve Safety for Paramedics: