World Sleep Society is committed to advancing sleep health worldwide. The pandemic has created questions from many of our members regarding sleep labs, physician safety and more. We have compiled information from several credible sources around the globe to assist in answering these overarching questions.
What is the process for re-opening my sleep medicine practice (including sleep studies) during the Covid-19 pandemic?
Guidelines exist from several organizations:
- The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released a plan to re-open facilities (April 19, 2020).
- Open ‘OPENING UP AMERICA AGAIN: Recommendations for Re-opening Facilities to Provide Non-emergent Non-COVID-19 Healthcare: Phase I.’
- The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) states all non-essential medical procedures be delayed at this time (as of March 2019).
- The CDC has several resources on preparing clinics and practices.
- American Academy of Sleep Medicine keeps an updated mitigation strategy available online.
- Australasian Sleep Association created a plan for the re-opening of sleep studies.
- The College of Physicians & Surgeons of Alberta (Canada) has created guidelines for resumption of service of a sleep medicine diagnostic facility.
- A collaboration of the French Society for Research and Sleep Medicine, the French-language Pneumology Society and the French Federation of pneumology (France) has created a proposal with guidelines in French.
- Download ‘PROPOSITIONS POUR LA PRISE EN CHARGE DES TROUBLES DU SOMMEIL ET DE LA VIGILANCE EN PERIODE EPIDEMIQUE COVID-19.’
- Chinese Sleep Research Society has created guidelines for sleep medicine at this time:
- American Sleep Association recommends that patients should consider postponing all elective, in-person sleep clinic appointments.
- Brazilian Sleep Society (Associação Brasileira do Sono) offers guidelines in Portuguese.
What are examples of other sleep institutions’ response to Covid-19?
- Stanford Sleep Medicine created a timeline of data and instruction:
- Download ‘STANFORD SLEEP MEDICINE RESPONSE TO COVID-19.’
- Seattle Children’s Hospital is implementing a 3-tier opening protocol.
- Download ‘Proposed Ramp up and Sleep Lab Patient Flow.’
- The Sleep Disorders Clinic in the Department of Neurology at Medical University of Innsbruck (Austria) released standard operating procedures before re-opening.
How can we better assist patients with sleep concerns during this stressful time?
Recommendations exist from varying international organizations, such as:
- The National Sleep Foundation (US) has created sleep guidelines during the pandemic.
- American Sleep Association created recommendations for patients that can be shared:
- Open ‘Covid-19 and Sleep.’
- European Sleep Research Society released information on dealing with sleep problems during home confinement.
- The Canadian Sleep and Circadian Network, the Canadian Sleep Society, Fondation Sommeil and Wake-up Narcolepsy Canada have joined forces to create a campaign.
Where can I find other reliable information regarding sleep and the pandemic?
- American Academy of Sleep Medicine updates its list of Covid-19 resources often.
- Open ‘COVID-19 Resources.’
- Australasian Sleep Association compiled resources for other respiratory and sleep clinicians.