FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Fort Wayne’s NBC) — One day after a reported cyber-attack, officials with Lutheran Health Network affirmed that patient data was not compromised by the incident.
On Tuesday afternoon, Lutheran Hospital was put on divert status and systems related to the health care company’s IT network were shut down due to what has been described as an external threat.
The divert status was lifted at 6:30 p.m., and operations began shifting back to normal.
Late Wednesday afternoon, Lutheran Health Network provided the following update:
Yesterday afternoon, we experienced an external, attempted ransomware attack. Our IT teams immediately executed incident response procedures by shutting down phones and computers to protect our network until an impact assessment was performed. Backup communications measures and other processes were implemented immediately. Because of the hard work of many LHN team members and outside vendors, most of our systems were rebooted and operational by early evening. We have found no evidence of any patient data being breached.Approximately 10 elective cases at Lutheran Hospital that were canceled have already been rescheduled. Our incident commanders remained in regular communication with area first responders and other hospitals during the brief time Lutheran Hospital was on diversion. This is consistent with the way our local healthcare community coordinates its efforts during diversions that do occur regularly throughout the year. Everyone involved should be commended.
We talked with a patient who was at a doctor’s appointment when it all went down, and is concerned that his personal data may be at risk.
"My frustration is it’s great if it’s working, but if it’s not it’s just a piece of junk," Diane Delagrange says.
She and her husband Wilmer spent part of Tuesday at Lutheran for an update at his cardiologist’s office.
But when the nurse practitioner came in the room, she was flustered because all the computers were down.
"She was very apologetic, she couldn’t record anything on the computers, like all the readings and everything. And she was frustrated but handled herself very well for the circumstances," Diane says.
A statement from Lutheran Health Network says its "IT department successfully stopped a virus from infecting its local network."
But in order to do that, all phones and computers at Lutheran’s southwest campus were unplugged.
Because of that, the medical staff couldn’t enter anything into their computers and had to record everything on paper.
"Computers go down, they go down. And that happens," Wilmer tells us.
He says he’s a bit worried that his personal information may have been compromised.
"That does concern you a little bit. Hopefully they have enough backup and different things that nobody can get into that. But you never know. It can happen," he says.
Lutheran’s CEO tells us there is "no indication that any data left the system" or that any patient info was compromised.
Delagrange is grateful his appointment didn’t have to be rescheduled, like some elective cases at Lutheran were, but is frustrated that the nurse practitioner couldn’t compare his results to previous visits because she couldn’t access his records.
"They couldn’t give us a printout of the day’s visit," Diane says.
Instead of leaving with a printed summary of the visit, the Delagranges will have to wait for one to be mailed to them.
A spokesman for Lutheran Health Network declined to do an interview about the virus.