SGMC Sleep Center Receives Accreditation

December 7, 2021

South Georgia Medical Center’s Sleep Center recently became accredited by the American Commission for Health Care (ACHC). ACHC offers a patient-focused approach to sleep accreditation with principles developed with direct input from industry professionals to ensure relevant and realistic standards. The accreditation ensures a higher quality of patient care is provided while also enhancing business efficiencies.


South Georgia Medical Center transitioned its sleep medicine services to the Smith Northview campus in July, under the leadership of Larry Simpson, Program Director.


The location change, provided the opportunity to provide significant enhancements to the program. SGMC’s Sleep Center now offers nine sleep rooms with sleep monitoring equipment, Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) machines, nature sound machines, beds and furniture to accommodate pediatrics, adults, bariatric and elderly patients. Patients also have the option to have a sleep study done in the comfort of their homes, if cleared by their medical provider.


One in every three people has a sleep disorder, and 95 percent of them remain undiagnosed. The sleep center helps diagnose sleep disorders that cannot be identified with a normal primary care office visit. Insomnia, sleep apnea, restless leg syndrome, narcolepsy are just some of the conditions that can be identified when participating in a sleep study.


Lena Shelby, Sleep Lab Coordinator states, “The benefits of having sleep studies are not just the treatment of our sleep disorders, it is also the treatment of our entire bodies. Sleep is the number one healer for human beings. Not getting quality sleep affects every bodily function we have. Our hearts, lungs, brains, kidneys, and so on are affected negatively when our sleep cycles are out of sync.”


Sleep Studies are non-invasive procedures covered by most insurances including Medicare and Medicaid.  The night of the study patients will report to the sleep lab around 8:30pm for the overnight stay.  A specially trained sleep technician will apply small, lightweight electrodes to the skin and scalp. These electrodes are placed to monitor a patient’s muscle, brain and respiratory activity. All the data recorded during the sleep study is then reviewed by a sleep physician.  The sleep physician will review this information as well as detail from the patient’s medical history and sleep behavior questionnaire to determine a diagnosis and specialized treatment plan.


“Patient comfort and care is extremely important to us as an organization. We believe our patients deserve the best care possible and with this enhanced service we can help better ensure that those suffering from sleep deprivation will be one step closer to getting those problems fixed for good,” said Simpson.


SGMC’s Sleep Center features three sleep technicians and a board-certified sleep physician. Referrals are required for a sleep study and sleep testing appointments are available.


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