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My experience with Kaiser Permanente and their sleep study process
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Mosquitobait Offline

Advisory Members

Posts: 746
Joined: Apr 2015

Machine: Resmed AirSense 10 For Her
Mask Type: Nasal pillows
Mask Make & Model: Airfit P10
Humidifier: integrated, Climate line tube
CPAP Pressure: 9-12
CPAP Software: ResScan SleepyHead

Other Comments: RLS and Bradycardia

Sex: Female
Location: Minneapolis

Post: #11
RE: My experience with Kaiser Permanente and their sleep study process
(02-08-2016 03:29 PM)justMongo Wrote:  Only one thing in your narrative took me aback: Group education on the machine.
Seems like one gives up some privacy. I suppose it's no different that being seen in a doctor's waiting room.

Really no different than the annual group education for those with pre-diabetes and diabetes. What I find amazing is a support-group! I think far more people would be successful with their xpap if they had really good support that puts the patient first. Most are not getting it from either their doctors or their DME. I am disappointed, though, that their choice is just Respironics. I had a Respironics machine as backup when my new Resmed machine was replaced. The algorithm for Respironics did not work for me. I would never have known that had I not had the opportunity to have both machines.
02-09-2016 08:52 PM
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rhodesengr Offline

Preferred Members

Posts: 24
Joined: Jan 2016

Machine: PR 560
Mask Type: Nasal pillows
Mask Make & Model: P10
Humidifier: PR DS6HFLG
CPAP Pressure: 6-20
CPAP Software: SleepyHead

Other Comments:

Sex: Male
Location: NorCal

Post: #12
RE: My experience with Kaiser Permanente and their sleep study process
(02-08-2016 02:33 PM)Winterfrost Wrote:  Wow. I am astonished with the incredible speed, efficiency and cost of Kaiser Permanente Northern California's sleep study process.

I was also quite happy with my experience at Kasier (Martinez, CA sleep lab). It was very fast from initial referral to take home test to one week trial. The main difference in my process was that after the one week trial, the new machine had to come from Apria which took a few days.

Later when I wanted a new P10 and the heated tube, that didn't go so smooth. My Sleep tech got the order in promptly but it sat in the "Kasier DME Hub" for a week until i called to see what was going on. Then Apria messed up the order a few times until I went in to a local Apria office and got them to straighten out their records and order for my account.
02-10-2016 02:23 PM
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cpdaniel Offline

Preferred Members

Posts: 61
Joined: Nov 2015

Machine: Resmed AirCurve 10 VAuto
Mask Type: Full face mask
Mask Make & Model: F&P SimPlus
Humidifier: Built-in
CPAP Pressure: IPAP: 9-17, PS: 4
CPAP Software: ResScan SleepyHead

Other Comments: Untreated AHI: 58. Undiagnosed years: 20+

Sex: Male
Location: Central California, USA

Post: #13
RE: My experience with Kaiser Permanente and their sleep study process
My experience with Kaiser was a mixture of the stories told here so far. In March of 2015, I woke up one morning with a severe head/neck ache, pounding tinnitus, heart racing, BP very high (in retrospect, I've realized that milder versions of this had occurred a couple other times in the previous 6 months).

I contacted my PCP who immediately referred to me a number of departments for testing and treatment - labs, audiology, physical therapy.

The next few nights were a terror - got very little sleep. Several of my friends/relatives suggested that it might be OSA, so I asked my PCP about it and he immediately referred me to the sleep lab. The sleep lab called me later that day and set up my first appointment - an overnight study with a WatchPAT.

The overnight results indicated that I had severe OSA (AHI of 58), with apneas of up to 90 seconds and desats down into the mid 80's. I was signed up for an APAP trial that same day.

Due to scheduling, it was nearly two weeks before the APAP trial - as others have mentioned, it was a group exercise - about 10 of us in a room being fitted with masks and sent home with Resmed S9 APAP machines for a 7-night in-home trial. Unfortunately, I was still having a lot of trouble with pain and I wasn't able to continue with the trial - I gave up half way through and said I'd try again in a few weeks once I'd improved my sleep hygiene enough to actually sleep for more than a few minutes at a time.

Meanwhile, I worked on sleep hygiene - got a new bed with a firm mattress, adjustable base, made the room quieter and darker - all of these things helped me sleep a bit better, so in early June I got signed up for another 7-night trial. This trial went a lot better - I was able to sleep, and it was clear that CPAP was helping, but I had a lot of mask leak problems - had to switch masks mid-week. By this time I'd found out how much my crappy Obamacare policy covered for DME: precisely $0 (although all the studies were covered with only $20 co-pays - go figure). Since I knew I'd have to pay out of pocket for whatever I ended up getting, I requested an appointment with the sleep Dr. to go over results and discuss options.

Here the Kaiser machinery failed me - it took eleven weeks to actually get in to see a sleep Dr. I had to constantly call back to the department before eventually getting scheduled (I was later told that the department was down two doctors, which caused a lot of scheduling delays - I'd estimate that this facility was seeing well over 100 new apnea patients each week).

While I was waiting to get in to see the Dr, I went ahead and got a custom oral appliance made - it helped! The first morning after sleeping with the oral device I felt more awake than I had in years!

Finally, on the last day of August, I got in to see the sleep Dr. We discussed the various options - oral devices, surgery, xPAP. She went over my test results and suggested that my pressures were fairly high, so I might need to do Bilevel, but left it up to me which way to go. We settled on a three-way approach: 1) Repeat the WatchPAT study, but with the oral device in place to see what effect it had; 2) repeat the APAP study, as my sleep hygiene had continued to improve; 3) do a bi-level study to see if it was better.

There were some hiccups, but eventually all three studies were done: The oral device cut my AHI from 58 to 27 - better, but still not good. The repeat APAP study was better - my pressures were down and my compliance was improved. The bi-level study was a great success - much more comfortable, even better results according to the data.

Since I was paying out of pocket, I needed an actual written prescription, rather than having them send it to Apria. Through miscommunication, they actually sent it to Apria instead. Finally I got my written prescription just before Thanksgiving (7.5 months after diagnosis). I ordered my AC10 from Supplier #1 and have been happily adjusting to the hose ever since. After 4 months I'm pretty well adjusted, but still seeing improvement from week to week. I even had a couple of AHI=0.0 nights Smile

It wasn't a fun ordeal - from reading many threads on this forum, I see that there are others whose stories are much worse than mine - actually, other than the scheduling a communication issues, it really worked out OK.
(This post was last modified: 03-20-2016 08:48 PM by cpdaniel.)
03-20-2016 08:45 PM
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mcortez Offline

New Members

Posts: 1
Joined: Mar 2016

Machine: REMstar Auto with A-flex
Mask Type: Nasal pillows
Mask Make & Model: ResMed P10
Humidifier: unsure
CPAP Pressure: 9-13
CPAP Software: Not using software

Other Comments:

Sex: Male
Location:

Post: #14
RE: My experience with Kaiser Permanente and their sleep study process
My experience with KP has been relatively smooth so far. KP Southern California, Orange County area.

I mentioned in passing to my Dr that my girlfriend noticed that I sometimes stop breathing at while sleeping and snored really bad. Dr immediately referred me to their sleep clinic. Appointment for the information/training session and initial sleep study was set for about 7 weeks out. Group information session took about an hour and we were provided a NOX-T3 Sleep monitoring device and given instructions on how to wear it. Device monitors heart rate, oxygen saturation, sleeping position, sleeping effort and nasal air flow.

Wore the device that night and returned it the next day. Waited about 30 minutes while they pulled the data from the device and then met with a PA, who explained the results (32 AHI) -- and he already had a RedMed A-CPAP machine (not sure which model) and a RedMed P10 pillow mask set out for me to take home for a one week trial. He gave a brief explanation of their use and off I went.

Before my week was up, I'd noticed that some nights before going to sleep one of my nostrils would be blocked and it made breathing through my nose difficult (due to bad allergies I find myself breathing through my mouth a lot) -- I left a message for the sleep center indicating my difficulties and that I might want to try a full face mask. They called back and said that once I have my permanent machine, with humidifier -- it would help with that. But that if I felt strongly about having the full face mask, that they would go ahead and fit me with one and give me a sample. When I went to return the trial machine, they downloaded the data and my AHI ranged from 1.7 to 2.9 depending on the night -- and indicated that they'd go ahead and do the initial prescription as nasal pillows, but they still fitted me for an ResMed F10 mask and let me take one home.

I'm now waiting on delivery of my permanent equipment, ETA one week. In my case, my KP insurance plan covers my CPAP machine and supplies 100% -- with no out of pocket.

I found this board yesterday and have been reading up in my spare time. So far I've been completely satisfied with KP's service.
03-24-2016 12:16 PM
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