Pharmacies Nationwide Struggle Amid Cyberattack on UnitedHealth Unit

Pharmacies across the United States are facing significant challenges in processing prescriptions due to a cyberattack targeting a unit of UnitedHealth.

According to a regulatory filing on Thursday, UnitedHealth’s Change Healthcare business, responsible for processing prescriptions for tens of thousands of pharmacies nationwide, fell victim to hackers who infiltrated some of its systems. The cyberattack, which the company became aware of on Wednesday, is expected to persist at least throughout Thursday.

As a result of the cyberattack, numerous pharmacies have been unable to process prescriptions for insurance reimbursement, causing disruptions in patient care. Facilities such as the Naval Hospital in Camp Pendleton, California, and Evans Army Community Hospital in Colorado have reported delays and inability to process prescription claims, forcing them to prioritize emergency and urgent prescriptions.

The impact extends beyond military facilities, affecting civilian pharmacies as well. GoodRx, a popular platform offering prescription discounts, confirmed service disruptions, apologizing to users for the inconvenience caused by the external issue. Even smaller pharmacies like Moffet Drug in Norton, Kansas, reported disruptions in their services.

UnitedHealth disclosed in its filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission that the cyberattack may have been orchestrated by a nation-state-sponsored group of hackers. The company assured that it has isolated the attack, notified law enforcement, and is actively working to restore affected systems.

While the exact nature and perpetrators of the attack remain under investigation, the American Hospital Association has advised medical facilities to disconnect from UnitedHealth’s network to mitigate potential exposure to the same threat actors.

Change Healthcare emphasized that the cyberattack appears to be confined to its network and has not spread to other systems within UnitedHealth. However, the disruption is expected to persist as the company continues to assess and address the incident. Further updates will be provided as more information becomes available.

Related posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *