Bathurst doctor welcomes Atlantic bubble, and a break from near constant self-isolation

·2 min read
Josh Mayich with his three sons. (Submitted by Josh Mayich - image credit)
Josh Mayich with his three sons. (Submitted by Josh Mayich - image credit)

Travelling between three provinces on a regular basis wasn't what Josh Mayich expected he'd be doing a year ago.

Mayich left his medical practice in Saint John to move to Mount Albion, P.E.I., to open the Island Hop Company. The farm supplies hops to many smaller craft breweries in the Maritimes.

But the weak Canadian dollar, combined with the normal growing pains of a new business, has prompted Mayich to return to his medical work when some old friends talked him into coming back to New Brunswick for work, at least temporarily.

"I got an invitation to go hang out in Bathurst and thought, 'Well, I'll just go out of respect for the two surgeons that are there,'" said Mayich.

"They're two close friends and really outstanding, outstanding surgeons"

Mayich also began helping out at a hospital in Yellowknife in the Northwest Territories, eventually splitting his time between three provinces.


Travelling between three jurisdictions would be a lot during a normal year, but add in the necessary self-isolation involved, and Mayich said it has been difficult on his young family.

"[I've been] in some form of isolation since Nov. 17, just because I'm never in one place longer than two weeks, so that's been challenging," said Mayich.

He said it has been really difficult for his eight-year-old son.

"In the summertime ... we told him, 'You know, you need to stay away from me,' and he very deliberately walked up to give me a hug so he could isolate with me," said Mayich.

"He turned around to his brothers and was like, 'See ya.' So he had to isolate on the farm with me for a couple weeks."

Waiting for bubble

If all goes well, the four Atlantic premiers have agreed to reopen the Atlantic bubble on April 19.

That's a day Mayich will be excited to see, as it will make travel back and forth between P.E.I and New Brunswick easier.

"It'll be amazing," said Mayich.

"There was a couple of weeks there where I was going back and forth [without] isolating and it was just like the clouds parted and it felt great. So hopefully we can get back there safely."

In the meantime, Mayich has signed on at the Bathurst hospital for five more years.

The constant self isolation has prompted Mayich to buy a house sight unseen in Bathurst.

While he will still go back and forth to the farm from time to time, at least his family will be in Bathurst, and it should mean less time away from them.

He called the city a hidden jewel and considers its bilingual nature a bonus because he wants his children to learn French.