Erie County Medical Center's computers shut down in cybersecurity incident

In the early hours of the morning on April 9, Erie County Medical Center in Buffalo, N.Y., suffered a cybersecurity incident, according to a report by The Buffalo News. A virus caused the medical center's entire computer system to shut down. 

It is not clear how long it will take to restore the computer system. But in a statement to The Buffalo News, hospital officials noted that "all hospital operations are continuing as normal and have not been interrupted."

The hospital staff is manually conducting activities such as patient admissions and prescription writing, with a few staff members working on laptops. Officials are not worried about losing important data, as the hospital backs up all patient information and essential records, including financial and human resources records.

The hospital's IT staff is working with Troy, N.Y.-based GrayCastle Security, a cybersecurity services provider to restore the computer system.

The state police and FBI are investigating the incident, although ECMC officials have declined to comment on whether the incident was a ransomware attack, according to the report.

Update: A hospital spokesperson has stated that no patient information was compromised due to the incident, according to a WGRZ-TV report. Although the virus mainly affected the hospital's email system, the entire computer system is still offline to prevent potential damage.

Editor's note: Becker's Hospital Review reached out to Erie County Medical Center for comment and will update as more information is available.

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