A Polysomnographic Technologist works under the general supervision of the Clinical Manager and Medical Directors to provide comprehensive evaluation and treatment of sleep disorders. This may involve polysomnography, diagnostic and therapeutic services or patient care and education. The RPSGT can serve as a preceptor to PSG Trainee and/or Technician in all age groups and settings. Domains of practice include:
1. Gather and analyze patient information
a. Collect, analyze, and integrate patient information in order to identify and meet patient specific needs (physical and mental limitations, current emotional/physiological status regarding the testing procedures, pertinent medical/social history), and to determine the final testing parameters/procedures in conjunction with the ordering physician or clinical director and laboratory protocols.
b. Complete and verify documentation
c. Explain pre-testing, testing, and post-testing procedures to the patient
2. Testing preparation procedures
a. Prepare and calibrate equipment required for testing to determine proper functioning and make adjustments, if necessary
b. Apply electrodes and sensors according to accepted published standards.
c. Perform appropriate physiologic calibrations to ensure proper signals and make adjustment if necessary.
d. Perform routine positive airway pressure (PAP) mask fitting.
3. Polysomnographic Procedures
a. Follow procedural protocols [such as Multiple Sleep Latency Test (MSLT), Maintenance of Wakefulness Test (MWT), parasomnia studies, PAP and oxygen titration, etc.] to ensure collection of appropriate data.
b. Follow "lights out" procedures to establish and document baseline values (such as body position, oxyhemoglobin saturation, respiratory and heart rates, etc.)
c. Perform polysomnographic data acquisition while monitoring study-tracing quality to ensure signals are artifact-free and make adjustments, if necessary.
d. Document routine observations, including sleep stages and clinical events, changes in procedure, and significant events in order to facilitate scoring and interpretation of polysomnographic results.
e. Implement appropriate interventions (including actions necessary for patient safety and therapeutic intervention such as continuous and bi-level positive airway pressure, oxygen administration, etc.).
f. Follow "lights on" procedures to verify integrity of collected data and complete the data collection process (e.g. repeats the physiological and instrument calibrations and instructs the patient on completing questionnaires, etc.).
g. Demonstrate the knowledge and skills necessary to recognize and provide age specific care in the treatment, assessment, and education of neonatal, pediatric, adolescent, adult, and geriatric patients.
h. Oversees and performs difficult and unusual procedures and therapeutic interventions
4. Polysomnographic Record Scoring
a. Score sleep/wake stages by applying professionally accepted guidelines
b. Score clinical events (such as respiratory events, cardiac events, limb movements, arousals, etc.) according to center specific protocols
c. Generate of accurate reports by tabulating sleep/wake and clinical event data
5. Service Management and Professional Behaviors
a. Comply with applicable laws, regulations, guidelines and standards regarding safety and infection control issues.
b. Perform routine and complex equipment care and maintenance.
c. Maintain current CPR or BCLS certification.
d. Demonstrate effective written and spoken communication skills.
e. Demonstrate appropriate social skills.
f. Demonstrate ability to follow direction.
g. Respond to patient's procedural-related inquiries by providing appropriate information
h. Demonstrate the ability to analyze complex situations and apply policy
i. Comply with Board of Registered Polysomnographic Technology Standards of Conduct
Experience & Knowledge:
Knowledge of scope of practice and thorough understanding of the basics of patient monitoring and care delivery.
Good interpersonal skills.
Special Skills & Equipment Knowledge:
Uses a wide variety of technical equipment to meet patient needs and prescribed medical therapies; has a command of the sleep-induced changes in the physiology of various body systems; has a working knowledge of the physiological and behavioral aberrations associated with sleep/arousal pathology and be capable of rapid interpretation of various tracings as to be able to intervene during a study.
Successful completion of a polysomnography program, of no less than one-year duration (short term certificate or associate degree), associated with a state license and/or nationally accredited education facility.
Nationally credentialed in an accepted health-related field (nursing, respiratory care, electroneurodiagnostics, or EMT-P) or 4 year degree program with a minimum of 6 months paid work experience in polysomnography and a minimum of 6 months patient care experience.
Certification by the Board of Registered Polysomnographic Technologists required.