A renewed commitment to a nationwide phone reference (1-800-SLEEPLAB) is just one of many projects on the Sleep Group Solutions docket.
Rani Ben-David, president of Sleep Group Solutions (SGS), North Miami Beach, Fla, wants to be all things to all people, at least when it comes to the telephone lines. The ambitious goal comes in the form of 1-800-SLEEPLAB, a work in progress that seeks to be nothing less than the largest directory in the sleep world—an ever-widening realm that includes neurology, cardiology, ENTs, dentists, and sleep physicians.
With Vital Lessons Learned
From 1-800-SNORING, a pilot project dedicated solely to the dental end, Ben-David hopes to be a first-call for consumers who need help. Depending on the zip code from where the call originates, inquiries would go straight to participating sleep professionals. Sleep physicians who use SGS sleep interpretation and scoring services will also automatically be a part of the 1-800 directory. “Right now there is no one directory for everybody,” says Ben-David. “This one reference is designed to be the heart for everyone.” While the listing is for FREE the sleep labs and Physicians have the option to lease the 1800 Sleep Lab number for the ZIP code they practice at for a very low fee.
SGS has built its reputation by thinking big, and when company officials needed an advisor, they went straight to the top, garnering advice from Atul Malhotra, MD, medical director for the Boston-based Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) Sleep Disorders Research Program. SGS is the manufacturer of the Eccovision Rhinometer and Pharyngometer.
Jeffrey Fredberg The Harvard professor who invented the Eccovision Rhinometer and Pharyngometer recommended Malhotra, and Ben-David now counts the BWH mainstay as a friend and business associate. As both a purveyor of education and a seller of sophisticated measuring devices and other Sleep products such as the Embletta ambulatory sleep device, SGS has seen dramatic growth that mirrors the hype surrounding the burgeoning sleep industry. Plans for 2010/2011 are simple: keep it going, spread the news, and take on even more projects. That is why CEO Tamir Cohen has started a road trip to Europe and the Middle East to start partnerships in those Regions.
New Partners, New Twists, New Technology
A partnership with Newport Beach, Calif-based Glidewell Dental Lab offers SGS an opportunity to double its number of educational seminars to about 80 per year. Glidewell Doctors will now get a discounted rate. Glidewell provides a lot of dental appliances in the vast metropolis of Southern California and throughout the World. “It’s a huge partnership because they do more than 3,000 sleep appliances per month,” enthuses Ben-David. “Those Doctors need the education, and it’s a perfect opportunity for two companies with integrity to come together for mutual benefit. Glidewell is one of the most reputable Dental Labs in the World”.
The SGS educational model starts with a 2-day seminar. “Most of the professionals who lecture for us are diplomates of the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine,” adds Ben-David. “Doctors come to the courses very excited to learn about the field of sleep. In 2 days, we teach them about apnea, insomnia, and the main sleep problems. Of course, we cover the dental side of sleep apnea and our dentists are very soon, busy treating patients.
An App for That
Technology in the form of an iPhone application is designed to aid consumers, many of whom rely heavily on cell phone information. The app records a bed partner’s snoring for 60 seconds, then features a questionnaire to fill out. “Send it to us and our server automatically sends it to the closest sleep pro in your area, and that professional is part of the 800 directory,” explains Ben-David. “The wife tells the husband that he snores. She can download the app and record him, the sleep doc will call you for the evaluation. People know they have a problem, but don’t take that extra step. Now the stalemate can be broken.” Sleep physicians and dentists can send the application via email as a kind of rudimentary initial screening. “It’s not a medical screening,” admits Ben-David, “but they can send it to their patients and ultimately give an opinion.” Oral Appliance for Less Yet another SGS venture with Respire Medical involves an
oral appliance at a reasonable price. “It is a laboratory-fabricated appliance at a cost of $149,” says Ben-David. “Compare that to a well-known brand that is $550. For the patient to be able to do it, we lowered the cost of the appliance. It’s as good as everyone else’s, but at a quarter of the price. We are making enough money on the $149 that we don’t need to charge more.” The Gelb Center in New York City has partnered with SGS and Respire to offer the best solutions for Sleep Disordered Breathing. Drs Harold and Michael Gelb direct an Integrated TMJ and Sleep practice at 635 Madison Avenue together with David Walton and Walid Raad of Respire and SGS.
Rani Ben-David, President of Sleep Group Solutions is based in Miami, FL.
For more information on SGS, please visit www. sleepgroupsolutions.com