Franklin A. Holman

The practice of sleep medicine is projected to shift as health care reform takes place and as more insurers direct patients to home sleep tests as a preferred diagnostic method of sleep apnea. Also in the pipeline is the potential for change that may come with the American Academy of Sleep Medicine’s Proposal for an Integrated Sleep Management Delivery Model and the Innovation Care Delivery and Management Program for Patients with OSA. With no precise data on how the practice of sleep medicine will transform, sleep labs are in a state of uncertainty. This doesn’t mean, however, that your practice should be complacent. Instead, readiness needs to be your mantra.

But ready to do what exactly? As health care shifts from fee-for-service to outcomes-based medicine, sleep centers need to be prepared to track outcomes. You also need to be ready to offer home testing if, as is expected, more insurers shift their preference to the diagnostic modality. If and when this happens, you should have data gathering tools in place to show that you can offer home testing effectively.

Despite the fact that it is still unknown whether CMS will accept the AASM’s proposals for integrating care, sleep labs need to be ready to move with the field toward a chronic disease management discipline. “The concept of an integrated center envisages that the center would provide alternative therapies for sleep apnea such as intra-oral devices. It further envisages that the center itself would provide CPAP therapy, thereby facilitating the tracking of CPAP compliance,” according to an article1 by Allan Pack, MBChB, PhD. Does your center offer alternative therapies? Are you tracking compliance? Is your lab ready to shift the thrust of your practice toward chronic disease management?

In order to be prepared for these changes you need to have the right tools in place. The Sleep Review Buyer’s Guide is the place to turn when implementing your game plan. In this guide, you’ll find an index of companies that supply the products you need, an index of products and contacts to reach each manufacturer, and a trade name index so you can locate popular products with ease.

—Franklin A. Holman,
[email protected]

  1. Pack AI. Sleep medicine: strategies for change. J Clin Sleep Med. 2011;7(6):577-579.