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Frustration over Scripps cyberattack, hospital confirms it 'involved ransomware'

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Posted at 4:41 PM, May 24, 2021

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - It's been 24 days since Scripps Health was first hit with a debilitating malware attack, but patients continue to reach out with concerns over care.

A copy of a letter to patients from Scripps Health on Monday confirmed that the incident being investigated "involved ransomware."

"I had broken by neck on April 5," said patient David Jacobson from Carlsbad. He broke his neck in a mountain biking accident. For weeks, he says he's been trying to get answers about follow-up care.

"I needed my images like my CT scans [and] my reports from the emergency room and I was unable to get anything," he stated.

Last Thursday, Scripps Health confirmed that part of its network had been restored.

RELATED: Scripps Health 'working around the clock' to restore system due to ransomware

This Monday, patients reported that the portal system is still down, and questions have been raised about whether insurance providers will cover patients who are referred out-of-network.

A spokesperson for Scripps Health said Monday that its patient-relations department can work on cases individually with patients to offer them guidance. No further comment on the issue was provided.

A private hospital compliance company told ABC 10News on Monday that the law does not require a health insurer to pay for out-of-network providers because of a cyberattack.

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Jacobson considered going to an out-of-network neurologist for care.

"My concern is the same problem [because] I can't provide him with all the imaging from Scripps," he added.

Scripps Health maintains that it's still able to deliver care at its facilities using backup processes and that its urgent cares, emergency rooms, and Healthexpress locations remain open.

Jacobson said Scripps Health coordinators called him after we asked them about his situation. He said that they apologized and said a manager would be calling him later.