The Regional Municipality Of York

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York Region paramedic receives prestigious bravery award for high-risk rescue

Newmarket – Special Response Unit Paramedic Anna Rybalko from The Regional Municipality of York has been recognized with the Ontario Award for Paramedic Bravery. This award recognizes individual acts of outstanding courage performed during the line of duty by members of Ontario’s Paramedic Services.

Special Response Unit Paramedic Rybalko was called to a high-risk emergency in 2016 when a worker was trapped in a construction trench that collapsed. Although the rescue site posed significant safety risk to all emergency responders involved, Rybalko used her Special Response rope rescue training to descend into the site while carrying medical equipment.

The collaboration between York Region Paramedic Services, Richmond Hill Fire and Emergency Services, Markham Fire and Emergency Services and York Regional Police enabled a swift recovery of the trapped patient. In recognition of Paramedic Rybalko’s selfless act of bravery on this call, she was recently awarded the Ontario Award for Paramedic Bravery at a special ceremony hosted by the Minister of Health and Long-Term Care at Queen’s Park.

Special Response Unit Paramedic Anna Rybalko

“York Region’s team of highly-skilled paramedics are delivering life-saving acts of assistance every day,” said York Region Paramedic and Seniors Services Chief and General Manager Norm Barrette. “Paramedic Rybalko’s bravery under pressure is commendable and represents the quality of commitment and care seen across our incredible team of paramedics at York Region.”

The Paramedic Services Special Response Unit is made up of specially trained paramedics who undergo extensive training to provide care in high-risk emergencies. These include chemical exposures, multi-vehicle collisions and executing warrants alongside police.

York Region’s team of over 450 paramedics provide emergency response and community care to York Region residents and visitors 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. Visit us at or follow us on Twitter @YorkParamedics

The Regional Municipality of York consists of nine local cities and towns, and provides a variety of programs and services to almost 1.2 million residents, 50,000 businesses and 595,000 employees. More information about the Region’s key service areas is available at

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Media Contact:
Ben Mulholland, Community and Health Services,
The Regional Municipality of York
Tel: 1-877-464-9675 ext. 74067
After-hours: 905-806-1216

York Region; paramedic; bravery award; Ontario Award for Paramedic Bravery The Regional Municipality of York en-US Media Release