05/28/2012 08:27 EDT | Updated 07/28/2012 05:12 EDT

More emergency room closures at Princeton Hospital spark second rally

PRINCETON, B.C. - Just days after residents of B.C.'s Similkameen region rallied against weeknight closures of the Princeton Hospital emergency room, more ER cuts have been announced.

Interior Health says an unexpected doctor shortage forced the closure of the Princeton emergency room on Friday and Saturday night during the overnight hours.

Another weekend closure is slated for June 22 to 24, in addition to the already-scheduled week night ER closures that began May 1, as hospital officials cope with a shortage of physicians.

Angry Princeton residents plan a rally at 3 p.m. today in Princeton to protest the extra emergency room closures.

The rally coincides with a visit from Interior Health vice president Susan Brown, who is scheduled to meet with town councillors.

When the Princeton emergency room is closed, residents must drive more than an hour north to Penticton for treatment. (CKOR)