Ascension says cyberattack impact at Joliet hospital is ‘minimal’

No timetable for when information systems will be back to normal

Ascension Saint Joseph-Joliet on Thursday, Aug. 24, 2023.

Ascension Saint Joseph–Joliet hospital has continued to provide all patient services since a cyberattack was discovered this week on the Ascension Health network, a spokesperson said.

The impact on the Joliet hospital has been “minimal,” spokeswoman Olga Solares said in an email.

Ascension, however, has postponed some elective procedures, tests and appointments at some locations throughout its network “out of an abundance of caution,” according to an Ascension statement updating the situation.

A “cybersecurity incident” was detected on Wednesday, according to Ascension.

Ascension has health care operations in 19 states and the District of Columbia, including 140 hospitals.

Ascension Saint Joseph-Joliet Surgery Center on Thursday, Aug. 24, 2023.

At several hospitals, emergency care has been diverted to other hospitals due to downtime procedures, the statement said.

The cyberattack has had an impact on Ascension information systems.

Patients are advised to come to appointments with notes on their symptoms and a list of current medications. They should also bring prescription numbers or prescription bottles.

“Systems that are currently unavailable include our electronic health records system, MyChart (which enables patients to view their medical records and communicate with their providers), some phone systems, and various systems utilized to order certain tests, procedures and medications,” the Ascension statement said. “We have implemented established protocols and procedures to address these particular system disruptions in order to continue to provide safe care to patients.”

Ascension said it did not have a timetable for when it will be able to restore all of its systems.

“It is expected that we will be utilizing downtime procedures for some time,” the statement said.