Pharmacies nationwide face delays as healthcare tech company reports cyberattack

FILE - A customer visits a CVS pharmacy store on February 07, 2024 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Pharmacies across the country are reporting delays to prescription orders due to a cyberattack against one of the nation's largest healthcare technology companies.

Change Healthcare, a company handling orders and patient payments throughout the U.S., first noticed the "cyber security issue" affecting its networks Wednesday morning on the East Coast. 

"Change Healthcare is experiencing a network interruption related to a cyber security issue and our experts are working to address the matter. Once we became aware of the outside threat, in the interest of protecting our partners and patients, we took immediate action to disconnect our systems to prevent further impact," Change Healthcare said in a statement. 

It added, "We will provide updates as more information becomes available."

Pharmacies across the country have put out notices that the attack on Change Healthcare is disrupting their ability to process patients' orders.

"We are experiencing a temporary pharmacy outage at the 22nd Medical Group. We understand the inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your patience as we work diligently to resolve the issue. Our team is working to restore complete pharmacy services as soon as possible," reads a post from 22nd Medical Group, a medical center based around McConnell Air Force Base in Kansas.

"The estimated date for resolving this issue will be tomorrow or later. We will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates on our progress."

There is currently no publicly available report on the nature nor origin of the cyber security issue plaguing Change Healthcare.

"There is a nationwide outage from some of the largest prescription processors in North America," Michigan-based Canadian Lakes Pharmacy wrote Wednesday on social media.

The announcement continued, "We CAN receive your RX but MOST insurance plans we cannot bill to your insurance company. If you can wait a day or so to pick up your RX that would be great. If you need it today we can do our best to accommodate individual needs."

A spokesperson for pharmacy chain CVS told Fox Business that the company is aware of the outages but that there is "no indication that CVS Health's systems have been compromised." 

"We are aware that Change Healthcare is experiencing a network interruption that is impacting certain business operations, as well as the operations of other companies nationally," the spokesperson said. "There is no indication that CVS Health’s systems have been compromised."

The statement continued, "We’re committed to ensuring access to care as we navigate through this interruption. We have business continuity plans in place to minimize disruption of service and apologize for any inconvenience our customers and members may experience. We’re continuing to fill prescriptions but in certain cases we are not able to process insurance claims, which our business continuity plan is addressing to ensure patients continue to have access to their medications.

The service outage is expected to last until Friday, but Change Healthcare has not given a definitive timeline for a return to service.