Delegate: Dr. Petar Chipev
Affiliations: Foundation “InSpiro”
Short Bio: Dr. Petar Chipev
– received master degree of medicine 27.12.2012
– pulmonology specialist
– certified expert in sleep medicine – ESRS examination in sleep medicine – 15.04.2015
– co-founder of the Bulgarian Society of Somnology – 25.02.2017
– member of the administrative council of the Bulgarian Society of Somnology – since 25.02.2017
– head of the task force “Sleep-related breathing disorders and non-invasive ventilation” of “InSpiro” Foundation – since 01.2017
Activity: Action “Sleep under quarantine”
Bulgaria is one of the few European countries without any reimbursement for diagnostics and treatment of Obstructive sleep apnea. This year’s activity called “Sleep under quarantine” was designed to provoke the society and Health authorities in Bulgaria to change their way of thinking and their politics in regards to patients with sleep apnea.
Plot: On 15th of March, 13:00 (01:00 PM), Dr. Petar Chipev places a camp-bed with the logo of the World Sleep Day in front of the Ministry of Health in Sofia. On a loud-speaker he plays a recording of snoring and apneas of a patient with obstructive sleep apnea while lying in bed, pretending he’s asleep. Passers-by hear the loud noise turning their heads to see what’s happening. Workers in the Ministry are bothered by the sounds, while they’re working.
Idea: The idea of “Sleep under quarantine” was to provoke authorities and citizens to think about patients with sleep apnea, which they normally isolate – at night, because their sleep is too noisy, they’re usually outcasts in a separate room, and also by the government, because it’s not helping them with any subsidy for diagnostics and treatment – putting this patients in a state of quarantine. By hearing the loud noise of snoring, separated with brief episodes of apnea, the usual day-life of the busy citizen is violated, which provokes him think “Why this man is laying hear making this awful sounds?”. He approaches the bed and he finds out a flayer explaining the idea of the action. A “Petition for reimbursement of diagnostics and treatment of patients with obstructive sleep apnea” accompanied with a subscription list is also placed on the table next to the bed so that the person could enlist in it if he supports the petition. Meanwhile the people working in the Ministry of Health hear the snoring and they’re also bothered, because they can’t work normally, which was thought to provoke the same reaction.
The action “Sleep under quarantine” was also thought as an initial action to start a subscription under a “Petition for reimbursement of diagnostics and treatment of patients with obstructive sleep apnea”. The petition is to be introduced to the Health commission of the Bulgarian parliament when enough signatures are collected.
Final results: Many people who passed by the busy square “St. Nedelia” in the center sight of Sofia in rush-hour heard the loud noises of the sleep of patients with sleep apnea. Some of them enlisted in the subscription list supporting the petition. A few TV media also broadcasted the action. An angry woman from the Ministry of Health went out a few times to protest against the loud noises which bother her work.
Unfortunately, the action was ended by the police after an hour and a half, because of too many signals from citizens for loud noise and violation of public order. Dr. Chipev was send away from the square almost avoiding a fine.
Aftermath: The petition was uploaded online and sent through e-mail to all members of the Bulgarian Society of Somnology with appeal for support.
TV medica broadcast:
Special thanks to:
Dr. Vera Megdanova
Mr. Stefan Tambuev
Location: Ministry of Health, pl. “Sveta Nedelya” 5, Sofia Center, Sofia, Bulgaria
Date of Activity: 15.03.2019
Submitted By: Dr. Petar Chipev