Care New England employees’ paychecks affected by IT problems

Business News

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Care New England employees’ paychecks are the latest aspect of the hospital group’s operations affected by an apparent computer attack earlier this week, as experts continue working to determine the cause and consequences of the incident.

Jess McCarthy, a spokesperson for Care New England, confirmed Thursday that hospital employees are receiving the same amount of money in this week’s paycheck that they received in last week’s regardless of whether they worked a larger or smaller number of hours.

Payroll systems have been locked down as part of the response to the IT incident, she said.

Care New England, Rhode Island’s second-largest hospital group, is the owner of Women & Infants, Kent and Butler hospitals, as well as one of the state’s largest employers. Its computer systems suffered what appears to be an external attack on Tuesday morning, forcing workers to switch to paper processes and cancelling some radiology and chemotherapy procedures.

Hospital executives continue to say most patient care has not been directly affected.

McCarthy said two external teams of forensic IT experts were working Thursday to bring Care New England’s technology systems “back online in a prioritized way.” She added, “In order to make sure that each service and station is brought back online properly, we cannot rush this and it may take a few more days.”

Asked whether there was any sign patient information had been hacked, McCarthy said, “At this time, we still have no reason to believe that any patient information was compromised, and we are working closely with our experts to be sure that data is not lost in the process of coming back online.”

Ted Nesi (tnesi@wpri.com) is WPRI 12’s politics and business editor and a Target 12 investigative reporter. He is a weekly panelist on Newsmakers and hosts Executive Suite. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook

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