21 Aug 2012

Dozens of hospitals temporarily lost access to patient records

Posted by iwgcr

Dozens of hospitals across the USA lost access to crucial electronic medical records for about five hours during a major computer outage last month.

On July 23, a “human error” affected an unspecified number of hospitals that rely on the Cerner Corp., a leading supplier of electronic health records to hospitals and doctors.

Cerner declined to comment on how many hospitals were affected in July’s incident.

Fortunately, Federal law requires medical providers and their vendors to have contingency plans for when systems go down. Doctors and nurses reverted to writing orders and notes by hand, but in many cases they no longer had access to previous patient information saved remotely with Cerner. That information isn’t typically put on paper charts when records are kept electronically.

St. Jude Children’s Hospital and Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital both had systems in place to access up-to-date patient records despite an outage, Le Bonheur simply switched to on-site electronic records.





Critical Data Lost

2012-07-23 Cerner 5 hours No