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System failure???

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Sad in AZ posted 8/8/2014 21:57 PM

I work for a very large international medical laboratory. I manage the lab at one of the branches.

On the way to work tonight I received a message that the computer systems were down for the entire branch. When I arrived, I found out that the computer systems were down worldwide Very little information was coming in. Even the managers' cell phones were not working. We have been unable to do anything all night. Normally, we process between 2500-3000 specimens a night at my branch. Mulitply that worldwide Absolutely no backup plans are in place. Millions of dollars are at stake because we have a delivery guarantee to our customers, not to mention the overtime involved.

I think our computer system was hacked and they had to shut it down to investigate and mitigate damages, but I am a notorious conspiracy theorist Can a server problem instigate an international computer shutdown?

roseguide posted 8/8/2014 22:05 PM

Somethings not right here.

Even the smallest companies have back up servers, disaster recovery and contingency plans.

For this to happen at a large, international, healthcare related company is at best suspicious and worst sabotage or a targeted attack.

caregiver9000 posted 8/8/2014 23:47 PM

An overload of birthday wishes on your server?

(It really doesn't help that I am watching Ancient Aliens on H2 right now...)

Kajem posted 8/9/2014 11:13 AM

I wonder if your worldwide lab facility is related to the worldwide plasma facility I donate to. Their computers were offline with no alternate procedures in place for system interruption. I waited a huge amount of time before I left.

I feel for the folks working it had been a long day and was looking to be a longer night.


HFSSC posted 8/9/2014 16:25 PM

I work for a large health care corporation with over 100 skilled nursing facilities, about that many assisted living facilities, hospice and home care divisions. We all use a computer system that lives at home office. Payroll, billing, Medicare interface, clinical assessments all work from that main software.

It went down a couple of weeks ago and was down for almost the whole week.

And we had NO backup plan. Nothing. No manual with paper forms and instructions of what to do in a computer failure. We did at least have our internet and medication administration systems. Also, I have a website with all kinds of tools that I was able to access so we could at least keep our work completed in compliance with Medicare rules.

Then we had the fun of inputting everything once the system went back up.

No one seems to know what caused the shutdown. But we have a plan in place now in case it ever happens again. It's nuts though, to see such a huge company totally hamstrung by what we've been told was an "unbreakable, uncrashable" system.

Uncrashable my ass.

purplejacket4 posted 8/9/2014 17:50 PM

About two years ago our entire Tier 2 university with two HSC, law school etc. Went down down for a week due to a virus. We have some "system down" procedures (called paper and pen) but we could not take X-rays or run labs for a week. The only post 1970s system that worked was the fax machine. Even our phones wouldn't work. Most non productive week ever.

Sad in AZ posted 8/9/2014 23:06 PM

We worked our asses off this weekend, but I'm woefully understaffed--three people left this month (two quit and one fired-a good thing ;-) But we were thwarted by the system again.

In the end, I had to send almost 2000 pieces of raw work to the lab tonight at 10:30pm. I have to go in tomorrow to take specimens out of the incubator, but that's it.

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