Speaking from 30 years as a nurse, and commonly having to deal with sleep issues, even managing forced sleep as a therapy option, (narcotherapy) I think we all need to be aware of the costs it will have on our health, In macs case his position of working shifts will have very heavy reasons behind his body and sleep debt, especialy if we look at the circadian clock, and how in his case the body will be trying to adjust it self to that change.
I am aware we often can feel compelled to work nights, even for the finer things in life like money, away from the family dynamics, or feeling unable to manage day time activities all work practices will have. In fact I used to work permanent nights, then after 10 years asked for a change due to family commitments, it was a very big wrench in many ways, both mentaly and physicaly and even after 2 years still had the long term issues of adjusting back, today 15 years later I still wake in the early hours fresh as a chicken, wanting to get on with the day, yet by 8-00am sluggish, no it may not be all due to osa. Remember all old habits die very hard, and may linger for some time, especialy with sleep deprivation.
People may think that sleeping pills will be the answer, but with most hypnotics having an addictive/habit forming process, in the longer term I would suggest it may not and in fact will often make things much worse. There is an abundance of resreach on unhealthy work practices, especialy shift work, & how it has very serious issues with physical and mental ill health, knowing it is probably the main course for most diseases to manifest it self and or develop in our bodies, hence has some very serious affects on our immune system.
It is all to easy to think we can just pop this pill and make things better, in fact this is probably the route course for most longer term compliance issues we often have with cpap, lets not forget though that sleep is most commonly the most reliable therapy we need when unwell, hence time off work to recover, paving a way for rest and recuperation, unfortunatly our buisness ethics style, gives little space for it today and sadly much less than it did 20 years ago, when I was so heavily involved with working conditions.
I would suggest in the longer term there will be a pressure to make legal cases, against employers and managing poor working practices, as we know is happening in parts of Europe, and in the USA, yet having totaly different approaches to try and manage it.
we are born with a need for 18 hours sleep, we will die due to a lack of it yet develop a need for the 18 hours again just before our demise. Mac look at how you can get that sleep need, at least 7 to 8 hours even if power napping, get into a routine and keep with it fella, remember your copd, and cardiac rythm problems, I would suggest they both have direct links to osa, and compliance with it, along with sleep deprevation, knowing that crazy little blood pumper, is working 24 hours per day, and only time it has to get some partial rest, is when we are asleep.