NHS Digital has been working around the clock over the weekend to support NHS organisations hit by Friday’s massive global cyber attack.
The ‘WannaCry’ ransomware used did not specifically target the NHS, and Fedex and Spain’s main telecoms operator are among those effected.
Nevertheless, the attack hit 48 NHS Trusts, and a number are still affected, including London’s Barts Health NHS Trust, which runs The Royal London Hospital, Newham Hospital, Whipps Cross Hospital, Mile End Hospital and St Bartholomew's Hospital.
“All of our hospitals remain open for emergency care, though some ambulances continue to be diverted to neighbouring hospitals,” Barts Health NHS Trust said in a statement. “We have slower than usual access to pathology and diagnostic services which means our services are running slower than normal, but they remain safe.”
“We will be reducing the volume of planned services on Monday to ensure we can continue to run services safely. However, some planned surgery and some outpatient appointments will be continuing at all of our hospitals. This will include all renal dialysis services.”
The Trust, which has already had to cancel some patient appointments, is asking the public to use other NHS services wherever possible.
NHS England sought to reassure patients, advising that A&E and other emergency services should still be used if needed.
“More widely we ask people to use the NHS wisely while we deal with this major incident which is still ongoing,” said Dr Anne Rainsberry, NHS England’s NHS incident director. “NHS Digital are investigating the incident and across the NHS we have tried and tested contingency plans to ensure we are able to keep the NHS open for business.”
Meanwhile, Labour and the Liberal Democrats have demanded an inquiry into the attack, though home secretary Amber Rudd told the BBC that the government had the ‘right plans’ in place to limit the attack’s impact.