In this K01 application, I will design and conduct a pilot study of a novel behavioral intervention to improve obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) evaluation and treatment among transportation workers. I will also explore whether improved adherence to recommended OSA evaluation and treatment is mediated by OSA self- efficacy. The proposed study will use qualitative and quantitative methods to design a tailored text messaging intervention with the aim of increasing OSA self-efficacy, leading to recommended OSA evaluation and treatment among transportation workers. Candidate: The proposed K01 will provide me with critical training in the development and evaluation of novel behavioral interventions. Training in (1) OSA research, (2) designing novel intervention packages, (3) clinical trials design to test behavioral interventions, (4) collecting and analyzing ecological momentary assessment data, and (5) designing and evaluating adaptive interventions, and (6) career development will bridge my prior training in health communication (doctoral training, Cornell University) and behavioral sleep medicine research (postdoctoral training, NYU School of Medicine). This training in underdeveloped areas of my background will allow me to reach my career goal, which is to transition to become a leading health communication researcher specializing in novel intervention approaches to improve sleep disorders awareness, evaluation, and treatment. In consultation with my Primary Mentor, Dr. Girardin Jean-Louis, I have assembled a comprehensive training plan, including coursework and apprentice- ship like training, which will be delivered and monitored by a cadre of outstanding scientists who will serve as scientific and career mentors . Environment: The superb educational and training environment at the NYU School of Medicine will provide me with the optimal training experience to become a federally funded, independent researcher designing interventions to improve adherence to sleep disorders evaluation and long- term treatment adherence. Research: The goal of this K01 application is to identify OSA barriers and facilitators, develop tailored health messages, and conduct a pilot study assessing their feasibility for improving adherence to recommended OSA evaluation and treatment among transportation workers. I will design an adaptive intervention to nudge and navigate transportation workers along their individual position on a spectrum of readiness to change. Messages will be delivered via text messaging in a mobile health (mHealth) approach. Messages will be designed to increase self-efficacy (i.e., belief in one?s ability to perform a recommended behavior such as adhering to recommended OSA evaluation and treatment) in accordance with Social Cognitive Theory. Future Directions: Results from this K01 will provide the necessary preliminary data for my first R01 submission to evaluate the effectiveness of the proposed intervention for improving OSA evaluation and treatment among transportation workers.
This K01 award is predicated upon the compelling data to show that transportation workers are at risk for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), yet report abysmal rates of OSA evaluation and treatment. The work proposed in this award will design a tailored text messaging intervention to address unique barriers and facilitators to OSA evaluation and treatment reported among transportation workers. This study will provide the necessary data for a planned R01 submission and launch the Candidate as a leader in novel behavioral interventions to improve sleep disorders awareness, evaluation, and long-term treatment adherence.