ECMC enters fourth day fighting digital virus

Apr 12, 2017

The region's trauma center is battling a virus. It caused Erie County Medical Center to shut down its computer system several days ago. And law enforcement is investigating.  

ECMC's Vice President of Communications, Peter Cutler says, the hospital's IT personnel detected the virus and shut down the hospital's computer system at about 2:30 Sunday morning to prevent any further damage. Cutler says they also called in ECMC's cyber security consultants.

Credit WBFO News file photo

"That actually has been working with the hospital well before this ever occurred. And also we've had subsequent conversations with state and federal law enforcement entities," Cutler said.  
ECMC's thousands of caregivers, he says, have prepared for any number of occurrences. And instead of using computers they brought out paper and pens.  
"That has had no impact on the operations of the hospital. Surgeries are continuing. Patients are being treated," Cutler said.  

And so far, he says, there's no indication that there's been any compromise of confidential patient information.
"We will go through post-event protocols involving state and federal regulatory agencies, which is required, just to double-check and to make sure," Cutler said.  

Despite the computer virus, Cutler says, patients should plan on keeping their scheduled appointments. He says ECMC staff is available to answer questions by phone at 898-5500.