Saskatchewan’s first permanent MRI scanner outside Regina and Saskatoon is up and running.

The Five Hills Health Region announced the start of MRI services at the Dr. F.H. Wigmore Regional Hospital in Moose Jaw on Thursday.

About 370 patients from the Five Hills and Cypress health regions who were on MRI wait lists in Regina and Saskatoon will be the first in line for the new service.

The health region says the new MRI scanner will help medical professionals diagnose and treat conditions such as cancer and heart disease sooner.