California-based SleepSafe Drivers, a national provider of sleep apnea diagnosis and treatment programs for fleets, has seen positive results of a clinical trial focused on testing and treating truck drivers with sleep apnea as part of a national contract
with J.B. Hunt Transport Services. The clinical trial is a collaborative effort among J.B. Hunt, SleepSafe Drivers, and Fusion Sleep, a Georgia-based provider of clinical sleep medicine services to patients and employers.

The trial is aimed at improving the health and safety of the drivers, and will also document any cost saving from reduced medical expenses and lower accidents as a result of the program. J.B. Hunt expects to continue expanding the program over time.

"One of our Million Mile drivers recently told us that he felt the sleep apnea program had literally saved his life," said Greer Woodruff, senior vice president of corporate safety and security at J.B. Hunt. "After starting APAP therapy, that driver has lost 115 pounds, knocked out his challenging and chronic daytime fatigue, and was able to begin exercising again for the first time in years."

Through the SleepSafe Driver program, the company provides On-Site testing and Sure Compliance treatment, both designed for truckers. This involves out-patient testing via ambulatory tests, which are less costly and more convenient for truck drivers.

"Working with our clinical partners at Fusion Sleep in Atlanta, we are confident that fleets will recognize a four- to 10-month payback period on the program investment, so it more than pays for itself in the first year alone," said Dana Voien, president of SleepSafe Drivers.

"The goal of the trial is to quantify the health benefits and document changes in fatigue-related accidents and safety as a consequence of this unique program," said Dr. Jeffrey Durmer, chief medical officer of Fusion Sleep and principal investigator of the clinical trial. "Preliminary findings already demonstrate real and significant health benefits, and we anticipate that this research will provide us with the most comprehensive data and cost-effective model for disease and accident prevention in the trucking industry."

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