FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE — Marietta, OH (August 18, 2021) — Memorial Health System has worked with national cybersecurity experts to resolve the impact of a cyber attack in the early morning hours of August 15, 2021.
"We have reached a negotiated solution and are beginning the process that will restore operations as quickly and as safely as possible. We are following a deliberate, systematic approach to bring systems back online securely and in a manner that prioritizes our ability to provide patient care. This could happen as early as Sunday," says Memorial Health System president and CEO Scott Cantley. "As we conduct our IT remediation work, our security experts have been monitoring and have not noted any indication that any patient or employee data has been publicly released or disclosed," he said.
"Patient care has continued to be our top priority," says Cantley. "Although many of our systems have been down, we have robust processes in place to maintain safe and effective patient care. We are collectively responding in accordance with our well planned process and policies for this type of event."
Moving forward, the health system will continue to focus on remediation technology that will be added to already intensive security systems. "It is unfortunate that many health care organizations are confronting the impacts of an evolving cyber threat landscape," says Cantley. "We continue to implement enhancements to our information security, systems, and monitoring capabilities."
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE ----August 15, 2021 - Memorial Health System experienced an information technology security incident in the early morning hours this morning, August 15, 2021. As a result, we suspended user access to information technology applications related to our operations. We have implemented extensive information technology security protocols and is working diligently with security partners to restore information operations as quickly as possible. Federal law enforcement has also been notified.
In the meantime, while this matter may result in temporary disruptions to certain aspects of our clinical and financial operations, we will continue to provide exceptional care to our community. We will continue to update our patients and the community as those changes occur.
"Maintaining the safety and security of our patients and their care is our top priority and we are doing everything possible to minimize disruption,” says Memorial Health System president and CEO Scott Cantley, “Staff at our hospitals- Marietta Memorial, Selby, and Sistersville General Hospital - are working with paper charts while systems are restored, and data recovered."
According to Cantley, all urgent surgical cases for Monday, August 16 have been cancelled and patients notified. In addition, all radiology exams have been cancelled. All primary care appointments will be held as scheduled. If patients have an appointment with a surgeon or specialist on Monday, we suggest they call ahead. For the most efficient use of a patient’s visit, we want to ensure we have historical patient information. If for any reason we feel their visit would best be rescheduled, we will reach out to patients directly.
"At this time no known patient or employee personal or financial information has been compromised," he said. "We are continuing to work with IT security experts to methodically investigate to precisely understand what happened and are taking the appropriate actions to resolve any and all issues."
Memorial Health System Emergency Departments are on diversion at 12 midnight due to IT system failures. We will continue to accept: STEMI, STROKE and TRAUMA patients at Marietta Memorial Hospital. Belpre and Selby are on diversion for all patients due to radiology availability. It is in the best interest of all other patients to be taken to the nearest accepting facility. If all area hospitals on are diversion, patients will be transported to the emergency department closest to where the emergency occurred. This diversion will be ongoing until IT systems are restored.
Memorial Health System is a not-for-profit integrated health system lead by a volunteer board of community members committed to providing comprehensive care services that meet the needs of our region. We are comprised of a network of locations and specialties provided by over 3,000 employees that include three hospitals (Marietta Memorial Hospital, Selby General Hospital and Sistersville General Hospital), outpatient service sites, and provider clinics. Memorial Health System strives to deliver quality care and service with an additional focus on medical education and community service. We invest in the most advanced technologies and treatments today, giving our patients the care that they need, so they can stay close to home.