Government under pressure after NHS crippled in cyber attack as weekend of chaos looms

13 May

Warning “nobody can recover your files without our decryption service” it then demands payments of $300 – stating that the price will be doubled in three days.

An NHS spokesman said: “At this stage we do not have any evidence that patient data has been accessed.”

Colchester A&E was among several yesterday urging the public to stay away, unless in the most severe need tweeting: “Our A&E is open for critical or life-threatening situations requiring medical attention, such as loss of consciousness, heavy blood loss.”

A ‘miracle if no one comes to harm’

At Lister Hospital in Stevenage, the telephone and computer system was fully disabled in an attempt to fend off the attack, with all non-urgent appointments and operations cancelled and patients told to keep away from A&E if at all possible. 

The loss of computer systems meant doctors and nurses lost access to X-rays, blood test results and booking systems, rendering a normal day’s work impossible.

A worker at Colchester General Hospital described how her office’s computers were “wiped out, one by one”. 

Dominic Marley, a hospital doctor in the Manchester area, said it would be a “miracle if no one comes to harm”.

Barts Health NHS Trust, which runs The Royal London, St Bartholomew’s, Whipps Cross and Newham hospitals in London, said it had implemented its major incident plan to cope with disruption.

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