STUDIO CITY—A woman was sentenced on March 5 to 37 months in federal prison after causing more than $11.5 million in health care charges that turned out to be either unnecessary or non-existent for sleep studies.
The sleep studies were “conducted“ at the Studio City medical clinic and were charged under the health care accounts of primarily employees of United Parcel Service, Inc., and Costco Wholesale Corp. by the owner of the clinic, Anna Vishnevsky, 52, of Valley Village. Vishnevsky was ordered to pay $2,747,071 in restitution, after learning that was the amount she personally received.
Vishnevsky, who owned Atlas Diagnostic Services, Inc., pleaded guilty in November 2018 to one count of health care fraud. It is said that she participated in a scheme to defraud health care benefit plans from March 2014 until June 2016, Vishnevsky and others working at her direction persuaded patients to participate in sleep study testing at Atlas by offering them cash. She offered them additional cash if they brought in other sleep study participants.
Vishnevsky recruited patients even though no doctor ordered sleep study testing for them and regardless of whether the testing was medically necessary or appropriate. Additionally, she did not score or interpret the data from the testing or send it to anyone who could score or interpret it, which is necessary for diagnosis and treatment. She added additional nights of extra sleep studies that never took place.
A co-defendant, Eddie Hernandez, 46, of Torrance, pleaded guilty in November 2018 to one count of health care fraud and is serving a 30-month federal prison sentence in this case. Hernandez was a UPS driver who helped Vishnevsky recruit people to participate in the fraudulent sleep studies.