HHS urges nations' health plans to act quickly to help practices affected by Change cyberattack

March 13, 2024
Area(s) of Interest: Cyber Security 

U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra and U.S. Department of Labor Acting Secretary Julie A. Su, have issued a joint letter to our nation’s health plans, urging them to quickly identify and carry out solutions to ensure practices are able to continue to keep their doors open and provide care to patients.

Change Healthcare, owned by UnitedHealth Group (UHG), processes 15 billion health care transactions annually and is involved in one in every three patient records.  By some estimates, disruptions from the Change Healthcare cyberattack are costing health providers as much as $1 billion a day.

The letter calls on UHG and other insurance companies, clearinghouses, and health care entities to take action to mitigate the harms the cyberattack is causing to patients and providers, particularly our safety net providers.

“The attack has impacted payments to hospitals, physicians, pharmacists, and other health care providers across the country. Many of these providers are concerned about their ability to offer care in the absence of timely payments, but providers persist despite the need for numerous onerous workarounds and cash flow uncertainty,” the letter said. “In a situation such as this, the government and private sector must work together to help providers make payroll and deliver timely care to the American people.”

The agencies are also urging UHG to expedite funds to impacted providers and ensure their ability to care for patients is not compromised by cash flow challenges stemming from this cyberattack.

For the latest updates on the Change Healthcare cyberattack and resulting outages, click here.


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