Why cyberattacks aren't harming hospital finances

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No one can deny data breaches' effects on hospitals and health systems, but cyberattacks don't seem to have hurt healthcare's profit, reports Politico.

Experts have warned of the long-term fiscal dangers of cyberattacks. "Increasingly, boards of directors are aware of the monetary penalties for breaches and the reputational damage they create," Boston-based Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center CIO John Halamka writes in an upcoming book on cybersecurity, according to Politico. "Healthcare organizations work hard to gain the trust of the patients. A single major security event can destroy years of good will."

But Politico took a closer look at the stock of Indianapolis-based Anthem and Franklin, Tenn.-based Community Health Systems after their respective 2015 and 2014 breaches. After Anthem released the news of its breach on March 13, 2015, stock opened at $146.83. A few days later, Anthem's stock traded at $153.25. Currently, the health insurer's stock has dipped to $127.48, but it "doesn't seem to be as a result of cybersecurity-related worries" — instead, the dip seems to be a result of Anthem's attempt at a merger with Cigna, according to Politico.

Community Health Systems reported its breach Aug. 20, 2015, and its stock was at $56.56. The next day, it only dipped to $55.67. Although CHS' stock is currently at $11.11, the dip appears to be a consequence of the company unloading multiple hospitals.

Cyberattacks aren't making a dent in hospitals' revenue, either. In February 2016, Hollywood (Calif.) Presbyterian Medical Center fell victim to a ransomware attack. But the medical center's quarterly revenue hasn't significantly suffered. In the first quarter of 2016, Hollywood Presbyterian reported $67.5 million in quarterly revenue, which is slightly above its first quarter of 2015 revenue, according to Politico.

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