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PART 1 of 2: New Online Sleep Medicine Practice, Singular Sleep, Offers DPC Practices Convenient and Cost-Effective Care

Singular Sleep, LLC is a telemedicine health startup, founded in 2014 by Dr. Joseph Krainin to improve access to sleep medicine, particularly for those with high-deductible health insurance plans. We are based in South Carolina and have developed a regional presence in the Southeast that is rapidly expanding nationally. We offer: sleep medicine teleconsultations (select markets) home sleep testing (select markets) consumer and prescription sleep health products

Singular Sleep, LLC is a telemedicine health startup, founded in 2014 by Dr. Joseph Krainin to improve access to sleep medicine, particularly for those with high-deductible health insurance plans. We are based in South Carolina and have developed a regional presence in the Southeast that is rapidly expanding nationally. We offer: sleep medicine teleconsultations (select markets); home sleep testing (select markets); consumer and prescription sleep health products; and more … Tel: (844) 757-9355 http://www.singularsleep.com

By Joseph Krainin, M.D., FAASM, President & Founder, Singular Sleep LLC

Dr. Joseph Krainin is the founder and president of Singular Sleep, LLC. After working for years within the traditional health care delivery system as the medical director of a large, accredited sleep center, I became fed up with the status quo. There were constant fights with insurance companies to try to get them to give my patients the treatments that they so desperately needed. Day in and day out, I saw patients forego treating their sleep disorders because they simply couldn’t afford the care that they needed due to having to meet high-deductibles. In some cases it was literally a choice between putting food on the table for their families or treating their dangerous medical disorders. A new direction was clearly needed. Tel: (844) 757-9355 http://www.singularsleep.com

Direct primary care (DPC) is an emerging practice model that holds the potential for higher patient and physician satisfaction and better outcomes compared with traditional primary care practice. In the DPC model, patient and provider incentives are aligned: the patient is naturally incentivized to stay healthy and the physician is incentivized to keep the patient healthy and minimize office visits, thereby maximizing net practice income. Sleep complaints are extraordinarily common in the primary care setting: According to an American Family Physician article, up to one-third of patients seen in the primary care setting experience occasional difficulties in sleeping, and as many as ten percent of patients have chronic sleep problems. Sleep apnea is the most common reason for referral for sleep medicine services. This disorder is estimated to affect 26% of adults ages 30-70 and 80% of cases are as-of-yet undiagnosed.

Joseph Krainin, M.D., FAASM is a board certified sleep medicine physician and neurologist and the founder of Singular Sleep. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and licensed to practice medicine in 30 states.

Sleep disorders can have a major impact on health and quality of life Sleep apnea is associated with myocardial infarction, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and hypertension, and depression, among other medical disorders. There is a growing body of medical evidence linking restless legs syndrome, periodic limb movement disorder, insufficient sleep syndrome, and chronic insomnia with adverse health outcomes. For DPC physicians, finding affordable, and timely sleep medicine solutions for their patients can be challenging.

The current sleep health care delivery model faces access and cost barriers that may be particularly acute for cash-pay or high-deductible health plan patients. In-lab sleep study out-of-pocket expenses typically range between $1,000-$2,000 and some academic medical centers charge $7,000-$8,000. Sleep study wait times of four to eight weeks are common throughout much of the country, and patients often face up to a three-month wait to see a sleep medicine doctor. Singular Sleep offers a novel solution. As a “virtual sleep center” with lower operating expenses than traditional brick-and-mortar sleep clinics and essentially unlimited capacity for sleep studies, it provides a number of logistical and economic advantages for DPC patients.

I founded Singular Sleep with the intention of creating a “virtual sleep clinic” that offers 360-degree, comprehensive management of sleep disorders with three interdependent programs:

Singular Sleep does not interface directly with health care insurance, but, upon request, provides patients with invoices that they may submit to their insurers.

Home sleep apnea testing is available for $249; this includes shipping of the testing unit both ways, scoring and interpretation of the data, and the sleep study report. If the patient completes all required steps without delay, the referring provider should receive a report in seven to nine business days from date of referral.

Should the test demonstrate sleep apnea, the patient can follow up with her DPC physician or schedule an online consultation with me. Consultations cost $149, but patients who have had a home sleep test with Singular Sleep receive a reduced rate of $125. Telemedicine consultations involving secure video interaction through a HIPAA-compliant platform (applications like Skype and Google Hangouts do not qualify) are now deemed acceptable by state medical boards for establishing the patient-doctor relationship. The consultation will allow me to take over management of the sleep disorder which, in my experience, most DPC providers prefer. Busy DPC physicians often don’t have the time or desire to take on the management of sleep apnea given its “high-touch” nature and the frequent need to troubleshoot therapy.

singularsleep1All that is required for a telemedicine consultation is an Internet connection and a smartphone, tablet or computer with a webcam. The patient will need to fill out our new patient questionnaire, send us a copy of a valid photo ID to verify identity, and register with our web portal. The majority of DPC patients referred to us have had no trouble conducting a telemedicine consultation. However, patients who are unfamiliar with navigating the Internet, unable to use basic computer functionalities, or significantly cognitively impaired may not be good candidates for this component of our program unless someone is available to assist them with the process.

Singular Sleep’s quality assurance reviews show that approximately 10% of tele-consultations have minor connectivity problems. Most of the issues with online consultations are due to user error in connecting to the portal or attempting to conduct the consultation from an area with a poor Internet connection. Our customer service representatives are available to guide patients through the process, answer any questions, and make sure that they are able to connect with me. Less than .5% of our tele-consultations fail to connect after technical assistance.

TO LEARN MORE ABOUT SINGULAR SLEEP and Speak to Dr. Joseph Kranin,

Contact: Singular Sleep, LLC

1000 Johnnie Dodds Blvd., Suite 103-142
Mt. Pleasant, SC 29464
Tel: (844) 757-9355
www.singularsleep.com

Joseph Krainin, M.D., FAASM is a board certified sleep medicine physician and neurologist and the founder of Singular Sleep. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and licensed to practice medicine in 30 states.

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