Better sleep means better health, which is why recent additions at Mercy Sleep Center – Fort Smith will benefit patients throughout the River Valley.
The new additions at the sleep center are part of a more than $2 million investment made by Mercy over the past five years to expand its Sleep Medicine program to meet the growing needs of patients throughout the River Valley. This recent expansion increases Mercy’s Sleep Center program to a total of 12 beds.
Mercy Sleep Center – Fort Smith recently opened two additional bedrooms designed for sleep studies, bringing the total to eight. The additions increase capacity for the center, meaning eight additional sleep studies can take place each week at the Fort Smith location. The program will now also offer weekend study options for patients for the first time. Mercy’s sleep center locations in Booneville and Ozark remain available to patients as well, with two bedrooms for sleep studies at each center.
The expansion also includes the creation of a home sleep test program. The program, which will get underway in early 2022, is designed for patients who meet certain criteria for an at-home study. Not all patients will qualify, but adding the at-home option will help Mercy accommodate more sleep patients than ever before, said Juli Stec, vice president of operations at Mercy Fort Smith.
“Mercy is committed to improving access to care for our patients,” Stec said. “The addition of the two new sleep rooms and implementation of the new home sleep testing program expands our ability to provide timely testing and treatment to patients suffering from sleep related disorders.”
Chellie Smith, director of sleep services for Mercy Fort Smith, recently received certification in clinical sleep health (CCSH) through the Board of Registered Polysomnographic Technologists (BRPT). Smith is one of just 1,073 active CCSH credential holders with the national board. The CCSH exam assesses the professional competence of health care providers and educators who work directly with sleep medicine patients, families and practitioners to coordinate and manage patient care while improving outcomes, according to the BRPT.
“I am thankful that Mercy supports ongoing clinical training and education to ensure we provide the highest level of clinical and professional expertise to patients throughout the area,” Smith said.
There are 123 years of combined sleep-specific experience between the two providers in the Sleep Clinic and the Sleep Center clinical staff, Smith added.
In October, the home sleep testing program received accreditation from the Accreditation Commission for Health Care (ACHC). Mercy’s sleep center “has demonstrated a commitment to providing quality care and services to consumers through compliance with ACHC’s national recognized standards for accreditation,” ACHC notes.
Sleep disorders can create a variety of issues for someone, ranging from fatigue and stress to more serious complications such as high blood pressure, heart attack, stroke and more. Disorders can include insomnia, sleep apnea and restless leg syndrome. Sleep deprivation results not only from a lack of sleep, but also from not sleeping well.
“Good sleep and good health go hand-in-hand,” Smith said. “If you are not sleeping well, your health will deteriorate. Mercy Sleep Center is here to promote improved health through quality sleep medicine services and comprehensive follow-up.”
This week, Mercy blessed the rooms with Mercy leaders and co-workers on site to help dedicate the new space.
Mercy Sleep Center – Fort Smith is as 5401 Ellsworth Road. Phone: 479-314-6144.