For inquiries NHS The 111 service has been warned of delays due to major computer system outages caused by cyberattacks.
The problem has affected some services across the UK, including ambulance dispatches, after-hours appointments, emergency prescriptions and systems used to refer patients for treatment. Perpetrators are understood to be cybercriminals, not nation states.
The National Crime Agency said it was “aware of the cyber incident” and was working with Advanced, which provides digital services to NHS 111. According to Advanced, the attack occurred at 7:00 am on Thursday.
Simon Short, the company’s COO (Chief Operating Officer), told the BBC:
“Early intervention by our incident response team limited this issue to a small number of servers representing 2% of our healthcare infrastructure.”
The Welsh Ambulance Service described the outage as ‘critical’, ‘major’ and ‘widespread’ and said it affected all four UK countries.
The Ambulance Service has warned NHS 111 Wales will be busier than usual on weekends, saying that while the ability to answer calls has been “maximized” by the Ambulance Service and the local Health Board, the It may take some time and we are grateful to the public for their patience.”
An NHS spokesperson said: “NHS 111 services will continue to be available for unwell patients, but as always, please call 999 for emergencies.
“Currently, disruption is minimal and the NHS will continue to monitor the situation as we work with Advanced to resolve the software system as quickly as possible. We have a contingency plan in place.”
A Scottish government spokesperson said: “We are working with the National Cyber Security Center to work with all health boards on a four-country basis.” [NCSC] Suppliers should fully understand the potential impact. It said a “continuity plan” was being implemented.
Northern Ireland Department Spokesperson health He said he was working to minimize disruption. “As a precautionary measure, access to company services from HSC is restricted to avoid risk to other critical systems and services. [Health and Social Care system] Disabled while the incident is contained. ”
On Thursday, trade publication Pulse reported that NHS England had warned London family doctors that the number of patients sent by NHS 111 could rise due to “serious technical problems”. .
An NCSC spokeswoman said it was aware of the incident impacting some services provided by Advanced and said it was “supporting the NHS and working with the company to fully understand the impact”. added.
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