George Washington University Hospital recovers from cyberattack that forced operations offline

The IT network and medical record system at GWU Hospital were restored this week and the facility’s online applications are being reconnected, Jane Crawford, a UHS spokeswoman, said in an email. The hospital had its systems taken offline shortly after the cyberattack was detected.

Staff at the hospital relied on offline record-keeping while UHS dealt with the attack that affected some of the system’s clinical and financial operations, officials from the national hospital chain said.

Patients’ electronic medical records were not directly affected by the cyberattack, according to a statement issued Monday. There also was no indication that employee data had been accessed.

Crawford did not immediately respond to a request to comment on reports that the hospital chain was hit by ransomware. But the Associated Press reported that the company’s description of the attack is consistent with the type of malware where data can only be restored with software keys after ransoms are paid.

UHS this week has made “substantial progress toward restoration of online operations” across its U.S.-based hospitals, outpatient clinics and behavioral health centers, according to the statement issued Monday. The cyberattack did not affect UHS’s facilities based in the United Kingdom, officials said in the statement.

Despite the network troubles that affected UHS, staff at the Foggy Bottom hospital were still able to treat patients safely, officials said.

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