Add Another Dimension to Your Sleep Knowledge with AAST’s CCSH Workshop
This year, AAST is offering a CCSH workshop on Sept. 6 before the 2019 Annual Conference. This program is designed for advanced level health professionals and educators who work directly with sleep medicine patients, families and practitioners to coordinate and manage patient care, improve outcomes and educate the community of the importance of good sleep health. At the end of this workshop, and upon completion of an online exam, RPSGT credential holders who have recertified at least once will quality to sit for the CCSH credential examination through BRPT’s newly created pathway.
Brendan Duffy, CCSH, RPSGT, is one of the presenters of the workshop. AAST sat down with him to get his perspective on why this workshop is a valuable tool for those looking to elevate their career.
AAST: What do you think is the advantage of having a CCSH?
Brendan Duffy (BD): It adds another dimension of knowledge to the RPSGT credential. Often we don’t explore the society impact and social ramifications of sleep disorders enough in our clinical roles. We also do not have heavy involvement in many cases, as far as working with insomnia patients and knowing about CBT-I therapy. Basically, it adds another layer of valuable knowledge for the experienced RPSGT and ancillary health care professional.
AAST: What do you think differentiates this credential among others?
BD: There is a major difference in this credential from other “sleep coaches” as most of the CCSH educators have extensive experience in a clinical sleep setting. They truly know sleep disorders and when to refer patients to sleep facilities. They also know how to read and adjust to information on clinical compliance reports.
Unfortunately, anyone can go online and get “certified” as a “sleep coach” so consumers need to beware of the qualifications, or lack thereof, for people calling themselves sleep coaches or sleep educators. CCSH candidates have extensive knowledge of sleep disorders, sleep hygiene, sleep teaching methods, and a global outlook as to the need to treat and educate for sleep problems in our society.
AAST: A lot of the education for the CCSH centers on patient care and outcomes. Why do you think that’s so important for sleep technologists?
BD: In spite of how much more education and media coverage is available, we still have a major disconnect as to how sleep deprivation and/or sleep disorders disrupt daily life and are linked to several other health conditions. There are some very exciting opportunities for sleep educators in the near future. These will be in both consumer and medical settings.
I am excited to be a part of the charter group of CCSH educators that will chart the course for the future. In short order, I believe we will be as common as diabetes educators or smoking cessation educators. Sleep will become a vital sign and our skills and knowledge will be sought by corporate, consumer and medical employers!