A new trial to treat sleep apnea with a tablet will give hope to sufferers who spend their nights attached to bulky CPAP machines.
The condition is linked to heart disease and researchers say a new heart hospital to be built at Melbourne's Monash University will give patients immediate access to new therapies and the latest clinical trials.
A sleep study confirmed why Brad Melbourne was constantly falling asleep at work.
“They found out I was waking 65 times an hour,” he told 7 News.
The 47-year-old is one of nearly 800,000 Australians who suffer from sleep apnea - where the airway closes repeatedly during sleep.
While a CPAP machine has given sleep apnea sufferers like Mr Melbourne a better night’s sleep, Monash University researchers are trialling a much less invasive treatment.
“This particular study is looking at a drug that's used actually to treat altitude sickness and we think we can predict who it's going to work in and who it's not going to work in,” said Dr Brad Edwards of Monash University's Sleep Research Program.
Patients will soon have even better access to cutting-edge treatments, with Australia's first fully dedicated heart hospital to be built next year.
The Victorian Heart Hospital will have 204 beds, cutting outpatient waiting times by more than four months.
As part of Monash University, it's already attracting the world’s best, including the professor who helped to develop the artificial heart in Germany.
"When you leave engineers alone they make wonderful devices ,but they don't fit or the surgeon can't use it," Professor Steinseifer said.
"Clinicians and engineers have to be close together they have to work together on a day-to-day basis."
Construction of the hospital is expected to start in the new year.