Schneider National, Inc. Wins National Sleep Foundation's 2007 Healthy Sleep Community Award for Innovative Sleep Apnea Screening Program.
GREEN BAY, Wis. -- The National Sleep Foundation (NSF) today announced that Schneider National, Inc., one of the largest truckload carriers in North America, is the recipient of the 2007 NSF Healthy Sleep Community Award for creating a groundbreaking obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) detection and treatment program for its drivers. Additionally, Long Beach Memorial Medical Center (LBMMC) and Miller Children's Hospital (MCH) - two facilities of Memorial Health Services -- received honorable mentions for their efforts to reduce the turnover rate for night shift nurses.
Schneider National is the ninth recipient of the NSF Healthy Sleep Community Award which recognizes outstanding efforts by businesses to initiate activities or programs based on sleep science with the goal of providing long-lasting results to benefit a significant portion of a particular community.
The commercial driver sleep apnea program administered by Schneider National was created in response to a study sponsored by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and the American Trucking Associations which revealed up to 28 percent of commercial driver's license holders have some severity of OSA. A potentially life-threatening breathing-related sleep disorder that often goes undiagnosed and untreated, OSA is characterized by pauses in breathing that last at least 10 seconds or more and can occur up to 400 times per night. Signs of sleep apnea include daytime sleepiness, falling asleep at inappropriate times, loud snoring, depression, irritability, loss of sex drive, morning headaches, frequent nighttime urination, lack of concentration and memory impairment. For commercial drivers, these symptoms are dangerous and potentially deadly. Research indicates that untreated sleep apnea puts drivers at increased risk for motor vehicle crashes as well as hypertension, cardiovascular disease, stroke, and diabetes and may contribute to obesity.
"Schneider National is honored that NSF has recognized our efforts to address the dangerous and far-reaching problem of sleep apnea in the industry," said Don Osterberg, vice president of safety and training for Schneider National. "Ideally, we expect our program will serve as a model for the entire trucking industry. The industry needs to generate awareness of this problem, educate drivers to the dangers of untreated sleep apnea, provide resources to help them get treated and ultimately make the roads safer for everyone."
After considering the extensive dangers of OSA on its drivers (most of whom fall into the risk profile for the disorder), Schneider National decided to tackle the problem head on by initiating an education campaign to raise awareness within the organization. Schneider National utilized newsletters, posters, leadership involvement and one-on-one meetings with its drivers. Through this dynamic program, Schneider National tested 547 of its drivers from April to December 2006; 445 of those tested -- an astonishing 80 percent -- were diagnosed with a sleep disorder and were provided treatment -- improving the health and safety of its driver workforce.
"NSF is proud to honor Schneider National, Inc. with the 2007 Healthy Sleep Community Award for developing a program that really hits home," said Richard Gelula, NSF's chief executive officer. "Truck and motorcoach drivers are a significant 'at risk' group for OSA and will continue to be so as the average age of drivers continues to increase over the next 20 years. Schneider National recognized the problem and took steps to make its drivers healthier and the highways safer for everyone. It is an admirable and very necessary campaign."
The advantages of the Schneider National screening program extend beyond the creation of a healthier, more alert fleet of drivers. The company also saw a reduction in health care costs. These savings were passed onto its drivers, as Schneider provided each identified driver with a free continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine -- the standard treatment for OSA. In addition to expanding the campaign within the company, Schneider National plans to take a leadership role in promoting industry change by helping the Department of Transportation shape future guidelines for screening and treatment of OSA in commercial drivers.
NSF would also like to recognize the LBMMC and MCH Nursing Night Shift Retention Task Force, for successfully improving the retention rate of their night shift nurses. Their innovative education programs and development of new policies and services helped to reduce the turnover rate for their newly hired night shift nurses by 33 percent.
About Schneider National, Inc.
Schneider National, Inc. is a premier provider of truckload, logistics and intermodal services. Serving more than two-thirds of the FORTUNE 500[R]companies, Schneider National offers the broadest portfolio of services in the industry. The company's transportation and logistics solutions include One-Way, Intermodal, Transportation Management, Dedicated and Bulk. With wholly owned subsidiaries Schneider Logistics, American Port Services and American Overseas Air Freight, Schneider National is the only truckload carrier to offer customers end-to-end domestic and international logistics solutions.
Headquartered in Green Bay, Wis., Schneider National has provided expert transportation and logistics solutions for more than 70 years. A $3.7 billion company, Schneider National conducts business in more than 28 countries in North America, Europe and Asia, and continues to grow its international service offerings. For more information about Schneider National visit www.schneider.com or call (800) 558-6767.
The National Sleep Foundation (NSF) is an independent nonprofit organization dedicated to improving public health and safety by achieving greater understanding of sleep and sleep disorders. NSF furthers its mission through sleep-related education, research, and advocacy initiatives. NSF's membership includes researchers and clinicians focused on sleep medicine as well as other professionals in the health, medical and science fields, individuals, patients and more than 800 sleep clinics throughout North America that join the Foundation's Community Sleep Awareness Partners program.