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OCC’s Sleep Disorder Program Wins Maximum Accreditation

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Coast Offers Only Accredited PSG Program in California

Orange Coast College’s Polysomnographic (PSG) Technology Associate in Science Degree Program was awarded the maximum level of accreditation from The Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) at its recent meeting in November.

“It’s really a feather in our cap,” said OCC Dean of Consumer Health Sciences Kevin Ballinger. The evaluator who visited campus in October was especially impressed by the college’s state-of-the-art sleep lab in the new ABC (Allied Health, Biology & Consumer Sciences) complex, he reported.

“We got substantial compliance with no issues at all,” Ballinger said. The accreditation letter came as a surprise. The CAAHEP Commission, which only meets twice a year, ruled on the accreditation findings after a site visit to the campus in October, and Ballinger wasn’t expecting the receive their findings for several months.

The peer review conducted by the Committee on Accreditation for Polysomnographic Technologist Education (CoA PSG) and CAAHEP’s Board of Directors “recognizes the program’s substantial compliance with the nationally established accreditation Standards,” CAAHEP reported. The next comprehensive evaluation of OCC’s program, including an on-site review, is scheduled to occur no later than 2023.

PSG is an allied health specialty for the diagnosis and treatment of disorders of sleep and daytime alertness. The range of sleep disorders is varied but includes common disorders such as narcolepsy, sleep apnea, insomnias and many others. PSG technologists operate a variety of sophisticated electronic monitoring devices which record brain activity (EEG), muscle and eye movement, respiration, blood oxygen and other physiological events. Technologists are also involved in evaluation of various treatment methods.

PSG technologists are employed in sleep disorders centers which can be located in medical centers, hospitals or clinic/office settings. The PSG program offers instruction which includes lectures, laboratory experience on campus, clinical experience at accredited sleep centers and physician lectures.

OCC, which developed the PSG curriculum over the past 16 years, presently has 24 students enrolled in the program, which accepts new students every other year.

Coast offers the only accredited PSG program in California. There are six accredited programs in the Western United States, and 45 programs nationally, Ballinger said. Students graduating from OCC’s program are qualified to take the State licensing exam immediately.

Orange Coast College, founded in 1947, is one of the nation's top transfer schools. With a student population of 22,000, OCC provides exemplary programs leading to Associate in Arts degrees, Associate in Science degrees and 145 career programs. The college's 164-acre campus is located in the heart of Costa Mesa. For complete details about OCC, visit