August 03, 2012

Sleeping on the job? Where is Sleep Apnea ED?

Well, I did call it a "sometime" journal of the executive director.

The association (and me) are engaged in so many wonderful projects I barely have time for all of them, let alone reporting on them here.

While I can, let me share what's up and offer a half-hearted promise to be back with more news and commentary soon.

At the June meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies (aka Sleep Meeting) the association received a grant of $10,000 from the American Sleep Medicine Foundation in support of the CPAP Assistance Program (CAP).

CAP accomplishes two important goals. First it is a recycling program. It keeps "gently" used or reusable Positive Airway Pressure devices out of the landfill. Second it provides those devices to individuals who don't have the wherewithal either due lack of insurance or personal resources to secure a device.

People seeking devices must be under the care of a physician and have a valid prescription for a machine.

More information about the program is available at We are looking for additional grants to support an expansion of the program. Individual donations are welcome!

A second exciting undertaking will occur at the 10th World Congress on Sleep Apnea happening August 27 to September 1st in Rome, Italy. Readers of this blog know that I reported on the Congress last year. My dream was to convene a roundtable meeting of sleep apnea patient organizations from around the world to discuss matters of common interest.

Dr. Elio Lugaresi
Sometimes dreams come true! Not only is the roundtable happening, here is the attendee list and agenda, I will deliver some remarks at the opening ceremony on the steps of the Capitol in Rome. I will share the dais with Drs. Christian Guilleminault (who I have written about here), Elio Lugaresi (a neurologist and an early researcher in sleep disorder breathing) and Myer Kryger (a co-authored with Drs. Dement and Roth of the key textbook on sleep medicine - Principles and Practices of Sleep Medicine).

The third (when do I sleep?), is our conference in October - The Economic and Clinical Impact of Sleep Apnea - A Solutions Conference for Employers and Health Plans. Following on two previous conferences that addressed sleep apnea in trucking (2010) and in transportation in general(2011), we next effort is to provide employers and health plans an opportunity to hear presentations from companies that offer demonstrated solutions to addressing sleep apnea. We will also share recent studies that demonstrate diagnosis and treatment of sleep apnea reduces healthcare utilization and thereby downstream costs. We are extending invitations to representatives from Medicare, Medicaid and the health insurance exchanges in the hopes of helping them better understand what solutions are currently available.

On top of all this wonderfulness I continue to monitor healthcare matters on Capitol Hill, Federal Agencies (HHS & DOT) and the Courts to advocate on behalf of people with sleep apnea.

Back with updates from Rome!

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