Medicare Coverage of Herbst Device Plays Huge Role in NFL Legends “Tackle Sleep Apnea” Campaign with Pro Player Health Alliance

The Pro-Player Health Alliance (PPHA) and former NFL players are on a national campaign to “Tackle Sleep Apnea” and raise awareness of sleep apnea and the effectiveness of treatment with Oral Appliance Therapy.

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Dr. Harry Sugg, Derek Kennard and David Gergen

The reality is, sleep apnea takes lives and that merits national awareness

Phoenix, AZ (PRWEB) October 26, 2012

In a passionate effort to spread awareness of sleep apnea across America, the PPHA has recently launched the “Tackle Sleep Apnea” campaign. The campaign is composed of sleep apnea awareness events that are held throughout every region and are in collaboration with former NFL Legends, many of whom are treated for sleep apnea with Oral Appliance Therapy. Sleep Group Solutions a leader in Dental Continuing Education and Dental Sleep Medicine along with David Gergen, a dental icon and President of Gergen’s Orthodontic Laboratory and Pro-Players Health Alliance, partner to offer this event free to the public.

The PPHA is dedicated to spreading awareness among and with retired NFL players through sponsoring sleep apnea screenings, in efforts to get them better educated on sleep apnea and apply treatment. Byron Williams, Vice President of the National Football League Players Association in Dallas, Isiah Robertson, President of the Dallas Chapter and Preston Pearson, were among those who have been tested.

“Over 25 retired NFL players turned out to get tested during the recent screening. Given by the Living Heart Foundation and Dr.Sugg in conjunction with National Football League Players Association Dallas Chapter, Chapter President; Isiah Robertson said we have never had this type of screenings before. We were very pleased by the outcome,” David Gergen said. “We will be holding more screenings across the nation for retired football players and the public.”

The “Tackle Sleep Apnea” Campaign will be making its second stop in Dallas on November 1, at the North Texas Automotive Museum. The museum is located at 677 W. Campbell Rd, Richardson. Former NFL legends that will be at the eventl include: Eric Dickerson, Isiah Robertson, David Krieg, Derek Kennard and Roy Green. Following the event, all players will be available for autograph and photo opportunities. Interviews with the press are available, upon request. The event is free and open to the public.

In addition, the PPHA is dedicated to integrating education and raising sleep apnea awareness, in a fun and memorable way. “We are currently treating our retired players that have tested positive for sleep apnea, with the Sleep Herbst and Respire device,” President of Sleep Group Solutions and Vice President of PPHA, Rani Ben-David said. “The fact that Medicare now covers the Herbst appliance, will help tie into our awareness efforts and it is a great help to those who are retired, such as our local American Legion members.”

On September 28, the list of Price Data Analysis and Coding approved appliances, was narrowed down to two Herbst devices. As a result, Medicare has begun funding the use of these two sleep Herbst devices. Herbst devices are oral appliances that are used for the treatment of sleep apnea. David Gergen is the President of Gergen Orthodontic Laboratories and President of the Pro-Players Health Alliance (PPHA). “We are very excited that Medicare has become involved in the fight against sleep apnea,” Gergen said.

“The reality is, sleep apnea takes lives and that merits national awareness. With these events, we plan to spread awareness and tackle sleep apnea throughout the country,” stated David Gergen.

Sleep Apnea goes far beyond the nuisance of snoring. In fact, it is now linked to cancer. Research also proves that untreated sleep apnea can raise the risk of heart attack, high blood pressure, stroke, diabetes, and even death. “Sleep apnea is found as the root cause of most heart attack deaths during sleep. It is essential that the public is aware of this life-taking condition that can affect every aspect of their lives,” stated Dr. Harry Sugg.

It is estimated that 80 to 90 percent of people suffering with sleep apnea still remain undiagnosed. Reggie White, an NFL lineman, considered by many the greatest lineman of all time died with three CPAP machines in his closet at the age of forty-two. This is one of the reasons David Gergen assembled this national awareness campaign. “I have seen first-hand what sleep apnea can do to someone and how it can be fatal if not treated as my younger brother Donald died from this three years ago,” Former Dallas Cowboy player, Derek Kennard, said. “Nobody should have to lose their life to this condition, when it can be easily treated.”

Harry L. Sugg, D.D.S., will be speaking about the Sleep Herbst device and treatment options. In addition, he will shed light on how a select number of dentists are now part of the treatment team, for sleep apnea. “I am very excited to be part of the campaign for the second time," Sugg said. "I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to be able to spread awareness to my community again."

The goal of the “Tackle Sleep Apnea” campaign is to save as many lives as possible, through spreading awareness. The campaign is scheduled to make its next stops in Oakland and San Diego. Dr. Bradley Eli, will be one of the experts on hand at the San Diego event. For more information on Dr. Eli and the services that he provides visit, http://sandiegoheadache.com.

David Gergen, CDT, rolled out of bed on September 12, 1981 and had his career “ah ha” moment. He knew he was going to be an orthodontic technician and he knew he was going to help people all over the country to help treat their sleep disorders in partnership with their dentists. David Gergen opened his family-owned orthodontic lab in Phoenix, AZ in 1986 and now employees over 50 people.

David Gergen also started a non-profit organization, The Pro Player Health Alliance, where he has launched a nation-wide sleep apnea awareness campaign titled “Tackling Sleep Apnea.” Former NFL Players Carl Eller, Chuck Foreman, Greg Coleman, Derek Kennard, Stu Voight, Warren Moon, Roy Green, Dave Krieg, Eric Dickerson, Nate Newton, Matt Blair, Isiah Robertson and many more former NFL players have joined Pro Player Health Alliance to help launch the awareness campaign.

In addition, the PPHA is also dedicated to spreading awareness to the American Legion and the public through sponsoring events across the nation, as part of the national “Tackle Sleep Apnea” campaign. “We are trying to spread as much awareness as possible,” Sugg said. “Many people don’t even realize that they are suffering from sleep apnea or that there are different treatment options available to them."

Over 300 members of the Fifth District American Legion have pre-registered to attend the event. “We want to spread the awareness to our members and feel that being a part of the campaign is the perfect opportunity to do so,” Jeff Perkins, Commander of the 5th District of the American Legion said. “This is an opportunity that nobody should miss out on,” Gary Smith, Vice Commander of the 5th District American Legion said.

To pre-register for the event, visit http://tacklingsleepapneadallas.eventbrite.com/ . To find out more about the campaign, visit http://Proplayerhealthalliance.com . To find out if you may be at risk for having sleep apnea visit http://www.SleepTest.com to take an online questionnaire.

The "Tackle Sleep Apnea," campaign has been featured on CBS Radio, ESPN Seattle Radio, FOX Minneapolis and Seattle, CBS and FOX Online Seattle and the Dallas Blitz Weekly, in addition to other publications.

ABOUT PPHA: The Pro-Players Health Alliance (PPHA) is an organization dedicated to helping former NFL players, through providing testing and treatment options for those who suffer from sleep apnea. In addition, the PPHA is dedicated to integrating education and raising sleep apnea awareness, in a fun and memorable way. In addition to the campaign, the PPHA is dedicated to testing and getting people treated who suffer from sleep apnea. The PPHA will be at Temple University in Philadelphia on Oct. 12 with The Living Heart Foundation in efforts to spread awareness. The PPHA was created by Rani Ben-David, President of Sleep Group Solutions, David Gergen, President of Gergens Orthodontic Laboratories and Former NFL legends.

ABOUT SLEEP GROUP SOLUTIONS: Sleep Group Solutions offers a complete sleep solutions program including; dental sleep medicine continuing education, screening technology, home sleep testing, oral appliances, insurance billing, marketing, in office training and more.

ABOUT GERGEN’S ORTHODONTIC LAB: Family owned and operated, Gergen’s Orthodontic Lab has been in business since 1984 and it has grown into one of the most respected labs in the country employing over 50 people. David Gergen, President, has been a nationally respected dental lab technician for over 25 years. He received the award for "The Finest Orthodontic Technician in the Country" given by Columbus Dental in 1986. He also received in 2012 a lifetime achievement award by the Gelb Academy as America’s Greatest Orthodontic Technician of all time. David Gergen is the Dental Director of the American Sleep and Breathing Academy and teaches seminars for the Continuing Education program at Tufts University on dental sleep medicine. Additionally, he is the Dental Sports Medicine Director of the Sleep Academy. He has worked for some of the pioneers in the orthodontic and sleep dentistry fields. He was the personal technician for the likes of Dr. Robert Ricketts, Dr. Ronald Roth, Dr. A. Paul Serrano, Dr. Clark Jones, Dr. Harold Gelb, Dr. Joseph R. Cohen, Dr Rod Willey, and Dr. Thiem Pham. One of his proudest achievements is receiving The National Leadership award for Arizona Small Businessman of the Year in 2004.

ABOUT DAVID GERGEN: David Gergen has been a nationally respected dental lab technician for over 25 years. He received the award for "The Finest Orthodontic Technician in the Country" given by Columbus Dental in 1986. He also received a lifetime achievement award by the Gelb Academy as America’s greatest Orthodontic technician of all time, in 2012. He has worked for some of the pioneers in the orthodontic and sleep dentistry fields. Gergen and his father John Gergen began Gergen Orthodontic labs in 1984 and has grown it into one of the most respected labs in the country. One of his proudest achievements is receiving The National Leadership award for Arizona Small Businessman of the Year in 2004. David is the Dental Director of the American Sleep and Breathing Academy and he has also taken a spot at Tufts University teaching seminars for the Continuing-Ed program on Dental sleep medicine. Mr. Gergen is also the Dental Sports Medicine Director of the Sleep Academy.

ABOUT SLEEPTEST.COM: SleepTest.com is an online awareness resource, dedicated to providing information to those who feel that they may be at risk or suffering from sleep apnea.

ABOUT HARRY L. SUGG, D.D.S. is one of the highly and most respected dentists in the Dallas area. He has been practicing dentistry for the past 40 years. He graduated with his Undergraduate Degree from Memphis State University. In 1969, Dr. Sugg graduated with his degree in Dentistry from Tennessee University. He spent his residency in the V.A. hospital at Tennessee. In addition, he is a graduate of the Advanced Program from the Misch Implant Institute. His memberships include: The American Dental Association, the Academy of General Dentistry, The American College of General Implantology, the International Congress of Oral Implantoligists, the American Society of Osseonitegration, the Texas Dental Association, the Dallas County Dental Association, the International Academy of Laser Dentistry and the Texas Academy of Laser Dentistry.


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