NEWS -- The Regina Police Service (RPS) has hired two primary care paramedics to help with emergencies at its detention centre.

The paramedics will work overnight – from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. – to screen people who are brought into the detention centre for COVID-19, review their medical history, go over any medications or substances they are taking and assist them in the case of a medical emergency.

Dayman said having a paramedic in the detention centre could be a timesaver for officers, who often have to wait for detainees once they are sent to hospital.

"It's a huge value to the police service," Primary Care Paramedic Jayden Dayman said. "Police officers have their general first aid, which is a good start. But having this specialization and having a paramedic down in detention with the ability to treat more than what a first aid standard can do prevents the transport of these detainees to the hospital.”

Dayman started working for the RPS on Dec. 1 and said it's been smooth sailing. He previously worked for the Saskatoon Police Service in its detention centre, which has had paramedics in cells for nearly a decade.

Insp. Kelly Trithart, the officer in charge of community services at the RPS, said having a health professional in the detention centre is positive for building relationships with the community.

"We have some individuals that have lived a high-risk lifestyle,” Trithart said. “Now when they come in, they have an opportunity to meet with a health care professional and perhaps have some better contact with the health community once they get out again."

Dayman said it's important to him that people who are in the detention centre are given proper medical care. He said he doesn't care why someone was brought into the police station because it should not impact the type of medical care they receive

"They may have been arrested for whatever reason, but that doesn't mean their access to health should be any different."