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Volume 10 No. 03
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Accepted Papers

Scientific Investigations

A Multicenter Prospective Comparative Effectiveness Study of the Effect of Physician Certification and Center Accreditation on Patient-Centered Outcomes in Obstructive Sleep Apnea

Sairam Parthasarathy, M.D., F.A.A.S.M.1,2; Shyam Subramanian, M.D.3; Stuart F. Quan, M.D., F.A.A.S.M.1,4
1Arizona Respiratory Center; 2Department of Medicine, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ; 3Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Sleep, Mercy West Hospital, Cincinnati, OH; 4Division of Sleep Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA


To study the effect of sleep center accreditation and Sleep Medicine board certification of physicians on patient-centered outcomes in obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).


Prospective, multicenter, comparative effectiveness study.


Four sleep centers


502 patients with OSA.



Measurements and Results:

Patients at two accredited and two non-accredited centers underwent polysomnography at participating locations and completed validated questionnaires, with objective measurement of positive airway pressure (PAP) therapy adherence performed three months after therapy initiation. The proportion of patients (age 53 ± 13[SD] years; 26% women; and body mass index 33.6 ± 7.2 kg/m2) who were adherent to PAP therapy by Medicare guidelines (> 70% of nights with ≥ 4 h use over a 30-day period) was greater in accredited (79%) than non-accredited sites (64%; p = 0.004). After adjustment for confounding variables, patients who received care from accredited centers (odds ratio [OR] 2.2, 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.2-4.2; p = 0.016) and certified physicians (OR 2.3, 95% CI, 1.3-4.0; p = 0.005) were more likely to be adherent to PAP therapy than those who received care from non-accredited centers and non-certified physicians. Patient satisfaction was associated with greater education received from physician (OR 4.6; 95% CI 2.3-9.3); greater risk perception (OR 2.7; 95% CI 1.0-7.4); physician certification (OR 2.1; 95% CI 1.1-4.2); and inversely related to delays in care (OR 0.5; 95% CI 0.3-0.9; p < 0.05). Such delays were inversely related to accreditation-certification status (p < 0.0001).


In patients with OSA, accreditation-certification status of sleep centers and physicians was associated with better PAP adherence, better patient education, better patient satisfaction, and greater timeliness.


A commentary on this article appears in this issue on page 251.


Parthasarathy S; Subramanian S; Quan SF. A multicenter prospective comparative effectiveness study of the effect of physician certification and center accreditation on patient-centered outcomes in obstructive sleep apnea. J Clin Sleep Med 2014;10(3):243-249.

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