Virus affects ARH hospitals’ computers in 2 states

HAZARD (AP) — Federal authorities are investigating after a computer virus infected all electronic services of the Appalachian Regional Healthcare system in Kentucky and West Virginia.

The system is dealing with technical complications, said ARH spokeswoman Melissa Cornett in a statement released Saturday.

The system of hospitals in Kentucky and West Virginia are operating under the Emergency Operations Plan because of a computer virus “that has limited our use of electronic web-based services and electronic communications,” Cornett said.

All ARH computers have been shut down to prevent the virus from spreading. It’s unclear where the virus came from. It was also unclear which West Virginia locations were affected, since ARH operates hospitals in Beckley and Hinton.

On Sunday, Cornett said that federal authorities were investigating.

All patient-care, registration, medication, imaging and laboratory services are being managed manually. Critical patients may be transferred to another facility.

Patients visiting a physician practice are asked to bring all prescribed medications to upcoming appointments until further notice.

The emergency departments are continuing to accept patients.

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