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Thanksgiving ransomware attack impacted 30 hospitals

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The Nov. 23 ransomware attack on Nashville, Tenn.-based Ardent Health Services has impacted 30 hospitals across six states, WKRN reported Nov. 29. 

The effects of the attack were so severe that certain emergency rooms had to redirect patients days afterward. For instance, UT Health East Texas in Tyler told CNN that during the incident, its hospitals reverted to downtime procedures and locked down its network. 

During the downtime, the hospital diverted ambulances to other ERs. As of Nov. 27, UT Health East Texas is providing care to patients in its emergency rooms. However, in certain instances where patients are critically ill, they may be redirected to other local hospitals, KLTV reported. 

Other affected systems include Tulsa, Okla.-based Hillcrest HealthCare System; Topeka-based The University of Kansas Health System St. Francis Campus; Amarillo, Texas-based BSA Health System; Nashville, Tenn.-based Vanderbilt University Medical Center; and Albuquerque, N.M.-based Lovelace Health System. 

Ardent Health Services detected the cybersecurity incident the day of and characterized the event as a ransomware attack in a Nov. 27 press release. 

The extent of compromised patient health or financial data is currently unconfirmed. The investigation and restoration of EHR systems and clinical systems are still ongoing, and the full impact and duration of the incident are yet to be determined. 

Ardent owns and operates 30 hospitals and more than 200 sites of care.

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