Cyberattack Impacts Change Healthcare, Causing Prescription Delays

Change Healthcare has revealed that a cyberattack has disrupted its ability to communicate with pharmacies across the United States, impacting prescription processing and causing delays in medication dispensing.
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Change Healthcare, a technology company widely used by pharmacies, facilitates crucial functions such as determining consumer charges at pharmacy counters.

The cyberattack has hindered pharmacies’ ability to transmit insurance claims for patients, leading to widespread challenges in processing prescriptions. As of Friday afternoon, the situation remained unresolved, with pharmacies nationwide reporting significant backlogs of prescriptions awaiting processing.

While not all pharmacies are affected, patients are urged to check with their pharmacy before visiting to ensure smooth service. In light of the disruption, pharmacists are working tirelessly to manage the situation and provide care to patients as efficiently as possible.

For patients facing medication shortages, pharmacists may be able to provide a limited supply to tide them over until the cybersecurity issue is resolved. Patients with new prescriptions or refills are advised to consult with their pharmacy regarding their ability to fill prescriptions promptly. If immediate fulfillment is not possible, patience is requested, and patients are encouraged to check back once the issue is resolved.

Michael D. Hogue, Executive Vice President, and CEO of APhA, acknowledged the challenging circumstances faced by both patients and pharmacists. He emphasized the additional stress imposed on pharmacies and personnel due to the cyberattack and urged patients with urgent prescription needs to communicate with their pharmacists for potential solutions.

“This situation may take several days to resolve, so in the meantime, we would ask the public to please keep in mind the incredible extra stress this situation places on pharmacies and pharmacy personnel,” said Hogue. Patients are encouraged to maintain open communication with their pharmacists to address any urgent medication needs during this challenging time.

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