Implementation of Sleep Apnea Screening: A Practice Improvement Project
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"Patients and healthcare professionals often neglect sleep apnea symptoms. The clinical team identified the need for Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) screening in the local cardiology clinic patients. Outpatient clinics provide an opportunity to engage patients in maintaining healthy lifestyles, promoting health and well-being. OSA risk increases in patients with heart disease worsening symptoms of coronary artery disease, potentially leading to myocardial infarctions and strokes. This practice improvement project included implementation of OSA screening, risk education counseling, and referral of high-risk patients for a home or in lab sleep study. Upon confirmation of OSA diagnosis, patients were referred to a pulmonologist for OSA treatment initiation. A quantitative analysis of the practice improvement initiative was used to establish its effectiveness, and SPSS version 26 was used to analyze the data. The project has the potential for greater impact and plans for sustainability are in place to provide ongoing screening and evaluation of outcomes. Keywords: sleep apnea, screening, diagnosis, home sleep apnea test."