Report of the Assembly of National Sleep Societies (on-line conference Nov 27, 2021)

On 27th November 2021, a half-year ANSS meeting was held online gathering over 25 participants. The idea of a half-year meeting originated from the earlier request to have more interaction between the national sleep societies during the year.

After welcome speech from the ANSS-EC president Prof. Ysbrand van der Werf (the Netherlands), the meeting started with the presentation of the recently published revision of the Catalogue of Knowledge and Skills (CK&S) (https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/epdf/10.1111/jsr.13394) by Prof. Thomas Penzel (President of the German Sleep Society).

The first edition of Catalogue of Knowledge and Skills was published in 2014. Since then, sleep medicine has expanded and transformed greatly presupposing tight interdisciplinary interactions. Nineteen co-authors contributed to the revision of CK&S, expanding the chapters considering the interdisciplinary nature of sleep medicine. CK&S regulates the amount of required theoretical and practical hours/ECTS points per each subtopic for MDs, PhD/Master, and Technician/Nurse. The next steps for implementation of the new approach are the harmonisation of the exam, update of the existing educational courses and development of the network of teaching centers.

Dr. Heidi Lammers-van-der-Holst (the Netherlands) presented the first results of the study on sleep and SARS-CoV-2 vaccination success (S-CORE), starting with the overview of existing data showing effects of sleep on immune response and vaccination efficiency raising an important question whether the success of SARS-CoV-2 vaccination can be influenced by sleep modulation. Dr. Lammers’ study aimed at the investigation of the immune response to COVID-19 vaccination in shift workers versus dayworkers. As secondary aims it questioned whether shorter sleep duration is associated with decreased short- and long-term anti-body response after vaccination, whether gut microbiome has any predictive value in vaccination efficacy, etc. Based on a comprehensive study including diaries, questionnaires, actigraphy, blood tests, etc., the authors expect to obtain important results in this innovative study field bringing new knowledge for further development of interventions to enhance vaccination immunity.

The President of the ESRS Prof. Pierre-Herve Luppi (France) addressed the NSS representatives raising several points for discussion and potential increased collaboration between the NSSs and ESRS. He invited the NSSs to collaborate more closely on several areas for mutual benefits. These include educational projects (in particular, adoption of the ESRS examination, endorsement of the new edition of the ESRS Textbook), Joint NSS-ESRS membership, and a possible flagship project which according to the expectations could be a large scale collaborative project between ESRS and NSSs to be announced at Sleep Europe 2022 in conjunction with the celebration of ESRS`s 50th anniversary.

During the ANSS updates session several important announcements were made. The ESRS Sleep Medicine Committee is developing sleep centre accreditation, and will set a survey in the next months. The European Sleep Pediatrics Network under the leadership of Dr. Barbara Gnidovec-Strazisar is currently being structured and developed, and is open for interested members. The Hypersomnia-MRI consortium led by Prof. Ysbrand van der Werf, devoted to the analysis of MRI imaging findings in central hypersomnia disorders, has opened a call for applications.

During sponsor session the Philips representatives presented the current state of the diagnostic and treatment pathways in sleep apnea emphasizing the challenges and need for the optimization of the existing approaches using the novel technologies by digitalization and virtualization of care.

These and other important issues of sleep medicine are planned to be discussed further during the ANSS annual meeting which is expected to be face-to-face (or hybrid) in Ljubljana (Slovenia) in May 2022.

Keynote Addresses

Catalogue of Knowledge & Skills – Prof. Dr. Thomas Penzel

Sleep & Sars-Cov-2 Vaccination Success – Dr. Heidi Lammers