A reader asks:
Can a Pulmonologist who is not board certified in sleep be a treating physician for the sleep center? I know the Medical Director and supervising physician has to board certified in sleep medicine.
Any specialty can be a treating physician. According to the AASM, The medical director has to be board certified or board eligible in sleep medicine, unless there is a separate "board-certified (or eligible) sleep specialist" who does the quality control/interreliability scoring.
Per AASM standards, if the doctor who interprets a sleep study isn't bc/be in sleep medicine, it must be overread by a doctor who is.
At the Hancock medical center sleep lab (a hospital-associated sleep lab), there is a general internist who is the medical director; I am the board certified sleep specialist and do all the sleep study interpretations.
For IDTF's each Medicare carrier has it's own standards of who can be medical director; some require that you be a pulmonologist or sleep specialist.
Some insurance companies have standards about which specialty can bill for a sleep study interpretation.
The AASM defines board eligibility in sleep medicine as having been accepted to sit for the sleep board examinations, your eligibility lasts for 2 examination cycles. There are also special BE standards for newly graduated fellows.