Sleep apnea treatment lowers truckers' health care costs: study

Commercial motor vehicle drivers who receive effective treatment for their obstructive sleep apnea significantly reduce their health care costs and lost work time, finds a study published in the May issue of the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.

According to a study abstract, the chief medical officer from Houston-based Waste Management Inc. and other researchers analyzed the insurance claim records of 156 drivers who received continuous positive airway pressure to treat OSA and 92 drivers who were diagnosed with OSA but received no treatment.

Health care costs for treated drivers dropped an average of $2,700 in the first year of the study and $3,100 in the second year. Drivers treated for OSA also had fewer missed workdays and lower short-term disability costs than drivers who received no treatment.

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