May 26, 2016 4:30 PM, EDT

ATRI Survey: Sleep Apnea Studies Costly to Drivers


More than half of drivers who have been asked to participate in sleep apnea studies paid more than 150% of their median weekly pay to do so, a survey released by the American Transportation Research Institute on May 26 revealed.

The survey of more than 800 drivers showed that 53% paid an average of $1,220 for some or all of the test costs. This compares with the median weekly paycheck of $805.

More than 60% of drivers with no health care coverage for the sleep study incurred out-of-pocket costs exceeding $1,000, while less than one-third of drivers whose insurance covered some portion of the study had costs exceeding $1,000. What’s more, 41% of the drivers had to take a day to up to a month off to participate in sleep apnea screening.


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ATRI’s survey also reported that fewer than 2% of drivers who were diagnosed with moderate to severe sleep apnea didn’t adhere to their prescribed treatment. Use of a Continuous Positive Airway Pressure machine was the most commonly prescribed treatment regimen. Drivers diagnosed with severe sleep apnea who were treated with the machine reported increased sleep (84%), feeling better when they woke up (71%) and lower blood pressure (75%). Among those with a diagnosis of mild sleep apnea, only 32% reported improved sleep.