Dr. Andrew Lawe, I bet you can “vouch for the fact that [you are] up into the small hours of the morning taking care of patients from Nelson and surrounding areas.” This is the point.
The population is not in Trail or in Rossland. Why was the regional hospital located in Trail in the first place? One of the original discussions was for a new centralized hospital to be built and the central point was near the airport in Castlegar. However, the plan was never operationalized and vested interests were apparent. Physicians objected because they would need to drive far from their homes in Rossland and on Kootenay Lake.
Let’s be honest and transparent: it’s not about health care but about lifestyle. The other point you make is “Funding in health care is limited.” Since you are a surgeon, it comes with a privileged life, but the reality for most Kootenay residents is their household income is not great. Driving to Trail is expensive due to loss of work and mileage. People take a whole day off work to drive another family member to Trail and gas is expensive.
Lastly, the infrastructure was never upgraded to accommodate a regional hospital in Trail. The highway was never upgraded with conditions at night especially horrendous. We have no decent tri-city public transit and without municipal and regional cooperation, we never will.