Home Sleep Tests and the Transportation Industry

From Boyd Goodson, on September 24, 2020

About 28% of commercial truck drivers suffer from sleep apnea1.  While the rest of the country also has high rates, commercial truck drivers at risk may need to be tested and compliant on OSA therapy to maintain their Commercial Drivers Licence (CDL).  Managing a prescription for a sleep test and finding your way into a sleep lab for a 1 - 2 night test creates a nightmare scenario.  

Before COVID-19 changed our world, about 70% of all sleep testing was done in sleep labs.  It’s estimated that the market will shift to 70% home sleep tests after the pandemic.  For drivers who may be away from home for extended periods, the home sleep test was already a better solution.  In cases where chain-of-custody is required, there are now options available for chain-of-custody sleep tests at home.  Even better, with disposable sleep test options now available, infection risks from COVID-19 are non-existent.

If you are a driver, you may have DOT or employer requirements to get tested.  That said, the biggest reason to get a home sleep test is your own health and safety.  In a study by the University of Minnesota2, researchers found that drivers who were undiagnosed, but suffered OSA, were up to 5x more likely to be involved in an accident.  The DOT assesses that 40% of accidents are fatigue related.  It’s not hard to connect the dots between 28% of drivers having sleep apnea and high-levels of fatigue related accidents.

 

 

What about health?  Even beyond accident risk, a study in the Journal of the American Medical Association3, found the treating sleep apnea lowers your mortality risk over time by 62%.  In other words, the longer you are on CPAP therapy, the more likely you are to be alive and healthy!  

Bottom line -- if you suspect you have sleep apnea, please get a home sleep test today.  It’s never been more convenient to get tested than today.

 

Sources:

  1. Department of Transportation
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4835318/
  3. https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamaotolaryngology/fullarticle/2730379