AASM releases Choosing Wisely® list to promote value-based sleep care

Recommendations support conversations between patients and physicians

DARIEN, IL – Dec. 2, 2014 – Today the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) released a list of five common tests and treatments that are not always necessary in sleep medicine as part of Choosing Wisely®, an initiative of the ABIM Foundation.

The AASM list identifies five targeted, evidence-based recommendations that can support conversations between patients and physicians to ensure that the right care is delivered at the right time. The list addresses the appropriate use of polysomnography to assess patients with a suspected sleep disorder, the treatment of insomnia in adults and children, and the assessment of positive airway pressure therapy for patients with obstructive sleep apnea.

“The American Academy of Sleep Medicine is proud to partner with the ABIM Foundation to ensure that patients receive high quality, value-based sleep care,” said AASM President Dr. Timothy Morgenthaler. “The effective diagnosis and treatment of a sleep disease such as sleep apnea or chronic insomnia is a win-win move. It improves the patient’s health and quality of life while reducing the resources used to manage common comorbid conditions such as heart disease, Type 2 diabetes and depression.”

Dr. Morgenthaler singled out one recommendation on the AASM list – avoiding medications to treat childhood insomnia – as being foundational for the widespread promotion of healthy sleep.

“Sleep problems in children often arise from delays or regressions in their developmental process for normal sleep,” he said. “These developmental processes are shaped by both the internal make-up of the child and that of their sleep environment, which includes household and parenting practices. Most often these are best and most safely modified by behavioral interventions such as creating a soothing and secure sleep environment, establishing a consistent sleep-wake schedule and following a relaxing bedtime routine. Parents and caregivers have an essential role to play in helping children develop healthy sleep habits that will last a lifetime.”

The AASM’s Choosing Wisely list was developed after months of careful consideration and review of the most current scientific evidence. Proposed recommendations were developed by the AASM Executive Committee, and the final statements were approved by the AASM Board of Directors.

“Conversations about what care patients truly need is a shared responsibility among all members of the health care team,” said Richard J. Baron, MD, President and CEO of the ABIM Foundation. “The American Academy of Sleep Medicine’s Choosing Wisely list will help sleep specialists across the country engage their patients in a dialogue about what care is best for them.”

To learn more about Choosing Wisely and to view the complete AASM list with additional detail about the recommendations and evidence supporting them, visit www.ChoosingWisely.org.


About the American Academy of Sleep Medicine

Established in 1975, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) is the leader in setting standards and promoting excellence in sleep medicine. With a combined membership of nearly 11,000 physicians, scientists, allied health care providers and accredited sleep centers, the AASM improves sleep health and promotes high quality, patient centered care through advocacy, education, strategic research and practice standards. For more information, visit www.aasmnet.org.

CONTACT: Katie Hatcher, L.C. Williams & Associates, 800/837-7123 or 312/565-3900, khatcher@lcwa.com