Baltimore – MedStar email and patient records databases are still facing problems four days after a cyberattack paralyzed them. Since early Monday, the health-care providers has been facing a possible ransomware, a type of malware that restricts access to infected computer systems to demands a ransom to remove the restriction. However, the health system has not officially acknowledged that it was victim of a ransomware attack.
The region’s second-largest health care provider started having problems with its network on Monday. Some of the staff members complained since early morning that their computers stayed offline.
Since the moment they first notice the problem, the $5 billion health-care provider decided to pull its system offline to prevent the virus from spreading. The virus appears to be a type of ransomware that encrypts files, making them inaccessible to the original users. Hackers have demanded an $18,500 payment for the keys to decrypt the data.
But even though different health centers had faced some complications, MedStar officials said they had continued providing care approximating their normal volume levels. MedStar officials estimated that the system’s medical personnel had seen more than 6,000 patients and performed more than 700 surgeries since Monday.
MedStar Health is working on fixing the problem
“MedStar continues to move toward full restoration of major IT systems while maintaining its promise to meet the care needs of the communities we serve,” the health system said in a statement issued late Thursday afternoon.
Ann Nickels, MedStar Assistant Vice President told Fox News that even though the hospital has already recovered its access to patient records and other vital information, it has only been possible in a “read only” capacity. Additionally, many doctors and nurses are still unable to enter patient data and other medical information into the network’s computer systems.
A doctor, who asked not to be named because MedStar has not authorized employees to talk to reporters, said that the computer systems he uses are back online, but another doctor, who also asked not to be named, said he had had little improvement since the problem began.
Source: Washington Post