Saturday, December 22, 2007

Medicare May Help Snoring Seniors Rest Easier

clipped from
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has in mind to extend coverage of continuous positive airway pressure devices (that’s the mask plus a pump that pushes air into the lungs) to more people suffering from sleep apnea. The expansion would make coverage available to Medicare recipients who’ve tested positive for sleep apnea in home tests. The existing policy applies only to people whose disorder was diagnosed in sleep labs.
Sleep apnea is a common problem characterized by frequent, brief interruptions of breathing during sleep. Some people think it’s just harmless snoring, but sleep apnea can raise blood pressure and the risk of cardiovascular disease. Some 12 million people in this country suffer from sleep apnea, according to the American Sleep Apnea Association.
Because home testing will now be an option, scores of patients who may have otherwise gone undiagnosed will be able to seek the best treatment,
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