BUSINESS CASE FOR DEVELOPING A PEDIATRIC SLEEP PROGRAM WITH GHI
1) The unique needs of PEDIATRIC SLEEP DISORDERS are best met by a regional pediatric sleep center. No one understands – and prioritizes – the health needs of children in your city better than the local Pediatric Department and other pediatric providers. Sleep studies in children require a different focus than adult sleep studies.
a) Pediatric sleep disorders require a multidisciplinary medical approach under one leadership. Pediatric sleep disorders often include behavioral problems and cognitive issues, such as autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), as well as other coexisting conditions. Treatment and diagnosis of pediatric sleep disorders require a multidisciplinary team that may include: behavioral therapists, child psychologists/psychiatrists, geneticists, otolaryngologists, pulmonologists, neurologists, and cardiologists. This is significantly different from adult sleep disorders, where obstructive sleep apnea? (OSA) and insomnia are the major issues. A strong pediatric leadership is essential in developing the collaborative, multidisciplinary team needed to treat each unique case.
b) Sleep technicians require specialized training to successfully work with the pediatric population. The age of pediatric patients may range from less than 1 month to 18 years old. On a personal level, sleep technicians who routinely work with this population develop the patience and experience to help children familiarize and adjust to the sleep testing equipment. On the technical side, pediatric sleep technicians become skilled at looking for specific, crucial parameter changes during the course of the sleep study; know when to interact; and, are able to score tests with pediatric guidelines in mind.
c) Sleep equipment calibration is unique for the pediatric population. Equipment used to perform sleep studies must be be calibrated and specialized for the pediatric population. For example, in pediatric sleep studies, the measurement of end-tidal carbon dioxide (ETCO2) is mandatory, per AASM guidelines. But this is not the case in adult sleep studies.
2) Recognition of a specialized pediatric sleep center will enhance your centers reputation. The development, promotion and acclaim of a specialized pediatric sleep program further enhances your centers overall reputation for excellence.
a) A pediatric sleep center is another avenue to promote your center's overall sleep program. Parents may be referred to the pediatric sleep center by pediatricians or school systems. Once parents see the beneficial results of successful treatment in their children, parents become more aware and advocate for sleep studies in adults.
b) New referrals enhance your center's reputation. As mentioned earlier, the diagnosis and treatment of pediatric sleep disorders often entail multidisciplinary care and coordination. The creation of a pediatric sleep center will naturally increase treatment referrals to other relevant departments, such as pulmonary, gastrointestinal, psychiatry, neurology, etc.
3) Separation of the pediatric population promotes better health results for all. Health department standards advise that it is preferable for pediatric patients to be seen in a physically different area from adults and particularly the elderly, for reasons of health, noise and different set of needs. As an example, pediatric patients may expose the elderly to numerous new viruses that could cause serious health issues in this vulnerable group. Pediatric patients may be more active and at times louder than other patients. Pediatric patients often require different programs to engage them (such as TV shows and toys), and respond best to personnel (such as front office staff and nurses) trained and experienced in working with children.
a) Parents prefer a specialized outpatient pediatric sleep center. As more sleep programs focus and promote a specialized pediatric program, parents have come to view specialized care for pediatric sleep disorders as a more desirable, higher-level of care for their children. Other parents express opposition to sending their otherwise healthy young children to a general hospital setting for a sleep study.
b) Insurers increasingly show preference for outpatient services. Some insurers have stated a preference for sleep studies conducted in a clinical ("outpatient") setting, rather than a general hospital setting.
4) GHI partnership represents the lowest risk option for your center to expand and specialize your sleep program for children. GHI offers a brand new, fully functional facility with state-of-the-art equipment. Partnering with GHI would provide your center with a turn-key operation to begin providing immediate services to the children of your community.