15 Dec 2011

Computer virus causes hospital to turn patients away

A fast-spreading computer virus infected an Atlanta-area hospital system and caused it to shut down for nearly three days, sending potential patients to other facilities. This hospital may need to ramp up its antivirus software to make sure this does not occur again and they can remain serving those in need.

The malware caused problems and got worse until the hospital was able to revert back to a older setting from their records system. The source of the outbreak is still unclear, but it is understood to be a virus.

"We actually have some of our IT vendor partners that are on site with us that have actually been here since Wednesday. We've also got internal teams that are trying to identify the virus issues," said Gwinnett Medical Center spokesperson Beth Okun, according to Atlanta ABC affiliate WSB.

Connectivity was affected by the virus but medical records were not harmed, according to Okun. The hospital was able to open its doors again mid-day Friday, but the hospital's IT department will have to improve internet security precautions to keep future viruses away.