Healthcare News & Insights

Hospital turns patients away due to computer virus

Here’s a news story that should remind hospitals of the importance of having back-up plans in place for critical IT systems.

Gwinnett Medical Center in Lawrenceville, GA, recently found its computer system under attack by a virus. The virus prevented individual computers on the hospital’s network from communicating with one another.

That prevented doctors and staff from accessing the hospital’s electronic health record system, and once the virus was discovered, the hospital was forced to divert incoming patients to other hospitals in the area.

Gwinnett officials said only computer interconnectivity was affected and that no records were compromised, WSBTV.com reports. So far, they aren’t sure how the virus got onto the system.

The system has been fixed and the hospital began accepting patients three days after the virus was found. While the system was under attack, the hospital resorted to using a runner system in which necessary paper documents were carried by staff from station to station.

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