The FINANCIAL — In advance of World Sleep Day on Friday, March 16, Royal Philips on March 13 announced the opening of Southeast Asia’s first Sleep and Respiratory Education Center at its regional headquarters, the Philips APAC Center in Singapore.
A recent study revealed that one in three Singaporeans suffers from moderate to severe obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), with most of the cases identified being previously undiagnosed and untreated. In the new facility, Philips will work with international sleep and respiratory physicians and partners such as Singapore Health Services (SingHealth), the largest healthcare group in Singapore, to train healthcare professionals from across the region to better diagnose and treat sleep disorders.
“OSA is caused by the repeated collapse of a sufferer’s airway, leading to low oxygen levels and disrupted sleep. It can cause daytime tiredness, poor work and school performance and more serious heart problems,” said Dr. Mok Yingjuan, Director, Public Education and Epidemiology, SingHealth Duke-NUS Sleep Center, and Consultant, Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, Changi General Hospital. “Unfortunately, many cases of OSA in Singapore remain undiagnosed. The clinical education programs conducted at Philips’ Sleep and Respiratory Education Center aim to train more local healthcare professionals, enabling them to interpret data from home sleep tests and in-laboratory sleep studies so that people are guided towards effective treatment of their condition.”
Simulating a patient’s sleep diagnosis journey
Philips will bring to the center more than 30 years of leadership in sleep apnea management and respiratory care solutions that support the patient’s journey from diagnosis through to therapy and management of their OSA. A 102 square-meter facility at the new center accurately will simulate the sleep diagnosis journey – from a life-sized mock-up of a patient’s bedroom for sleep observation, to a monitoring room where sleep technicians can score and analyze sleep data, and a doctor’s consultation room. The innovative new facility will also employ virtual reality to simulate the abnormal sleep patterns that patients may exhibit during a sleep study, such as limb movements, rapid eye movements and respiratory difficulties.
In addition to enhancing physicians’ diagnostic knowledge, the new Sleep and Respiratory Education Center is designed to upskill physicians in the use of Philips’ latest sleep and respiratory therapy technologies and solutions, such as the Philips Dream Family connected CPAP and home ventilation solutions, and the company’s oxygen therapy and respiratory drug delivery solutions. Physicians will also be trained in the use of Philips’ innovative digital engagement tools, which aim to keep patients motivated in using their therapy as prescribed. As part of the new center’s opening, Philips also today announced the launch of a series of complimentary peer-to-peer training programs that will be conducted by prominent international sleep and respiratory physicians.
“Sleep health is an important yet often forgotten pillar of health and wellbeing,” said Ivy Lai, Country Manager, Philips Singapore. “With the technologies available today, and advances in home testing, we aim to make it easier for people who suffer from sleep disorders to access professional help. Our center aims to provide best-in-class education and training from the world’s leading sleep specialists to help address the current gap in sleep-qualified professionals in Southeast Asia, so that timely diagnosis and treatment can be provided to people who suffer from sleep disorders.”