A unique course again provided training on sleep techniques
After one year, the Cardiovascular Sleep Research Centre at FNUSA-ICRC organised a Course for Sleep Technicians. This week, ten attendees from throughout the Czech Republic participated. The presence of at least one certified sleep technician is a condition for a centre providing sleep disorder diagnostics and treatment to receive accreditation.
A certified sleep technician must have a secondary or university education with specialisation as a general nurse, laboratory technician or other health care specialization that concerns sleep and vigilance disorders, their diagnostics and treatment. Following the example of the USA and western EU countries, since 2016, the Czech Sleep Research and Sleep Medicine Society has been trying to incorporate sleep techniques into specialized diagnostic and therapeutic processes in sleep laboratories. “Therefore, we have developed a course that has been held annually since 2016 as the only one of its kind in the Czech Republic. In addition to basic knowledge, sleep technicians must also master the skills of polygraphy and polysomnography registration, and must be able to interpret the records of such examinations, measure daily somnolence, and set a course of therapy with the help of different types of positive overpressure ventilation, and much more. They must also know the principles and operation of the relevant machinery, including modern telemonitoring methods,” says Prof. MUDr. Ondřej Ludka, Ph.D., Head of the FNUSA-ICRC Cardiovascular Sleep Research Centre.
Course participants first learn the theory and the majority of the time is spent in sleep laboratories. “In one day, they cover the theory of neurology, cardiology and pulmonary medicine, while on subsequent days they learn about practical experience from our certified sleep technician. The course ends with an oral exam and a certificate,” explains the Head Nurse of the International Clinical Research Centre at St. Anne’s University Hospital in Brno.
The Sleep Centre is accredited by the Czech Sleep Research and Sleep Medicine Society and is included in the list of European Sleep Research Laboratories. This means that researchers from the entire EU can be trained here. In addition to running courses for sleep technicians, the centre also organizes sleep medicine courses for physicians. And both types of courses have been gaining more and more interest. “Physicians in sleep centres at different hospitals are overloaded with patients. Certified sleep technicians provide significant help to doctors and therefore, organizing a course just once a year is no longer sufficient. The next one will be held in February,” concludes Professor Ondřej Ludka.