Westmead's Sleep Disorders unit shines

Snorers and sufferers of sleep apnoea can breathe a sigh of relief after Westmead Hospital’s Sleep Disorders Service became the first in NSW to reach the highest standard of service delivery in Australia and New Zealand.

The service is the first in the state and the fifth in the country to be accredited by peak scientific accreditation authorities the National Association of Testing Authorities and the Australasian Sleep Association. The service conducts complex overnight sleep studies in monitoring rooms as well as in the comfort of patients’ homes.

Department of respiratory and sleep medicine director Professor John Wheatley said the accreditation demonstrated Westmead Hospital is offering the highest quality service.

“It means our community will receive excellent care through our state-of-the-art treatments, accurate results, and international best-practice standards,” Professor Wheatley said.

Patient Moreen Murphy, 73, who suffers from severe sleep apnoea, said her sleep interruptions have been dramatically reduced since her treatment began.

“I used to wake up often during the night and I thought I was just a bad sleeper, or that it was due to my early starts for work,” Ms Murphy said.

“I now wake up once a night instead of four times and I feel much better. Even my girls told me I look different, and not so tired.”

Sleep apnoea affects more than 13 per cent of men and six per cent of women in Australia. Men aged 40 to 60 are twice as likely to experience the condition.

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