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Case Studies

Hospital Relies on Acorn Platform for Backup During Malware Attack

Malware attacks are a fact of life for large organizations. When the IT department of one of Acorn’s hospital clients was forced to shut down all computers on the network to tackle a ransomware event, it created a monumental problem for medical staff and administrators needing to communicate with clinical staff during a mission critical period for the organization.

Without the ability to send, receive, or open emails, the hospital reached out to Acorn Support for help in keeping the flow of communications open during a crucial time.

How Acorn solved the problem

The Acorn platform’s solution for hospitals and health systems is built on a cloud-based architecture with a secure database that stores each practitioner’s email, phone, fax, home, and business address information.

So even though the hospital computers were inaccessible, Acorn was accessible from a personal computer. The client was able to access email templates and addresses to notify their providers of the malware attack, and enabled them to give direction to staff on how to proceed with downtime/offline documentation methods until the malware attack was mitigated.

There is a powerful correspondence function within Acorn that clients can use to send emails and faxes directly from the Acorn system. It automatically populates email content and attachments with practitioner and organizational data into customized templates. Acorn’s correspondence function is smart. The user doesn’t have to retrieve email accounts and enter each email address. Based on the user-specified target group of people, such as physicians with MD, DO and DPM degrees, the Acorn system auto-fills their email addresses. Email status is tracked in the Acorn system and it identifies any delayed or undeliverable emails.

The new software and automation in comparison to the paper processes increased efficiency by 83% in the first few months.

Acorn’s correspondence function is also efficient. The user only needs to create one correspondence and make a few selections. The system populates from an email template or the user can type in customized email content. Attachments can be uploaded if desired and the system auto-generates and sends the email to all the physicians in one click. Email can be generated to send to one or more physicians and copied to any other desired recipients.

Acorn benefits and results

During the malware incident, the hospital used Acorn to generate more than 600 emails in less than two minutes to alert practitioners. All the emails (including attachments) were sent out within seven minutes. The Acorn system’s built-in functionality provided an important communications workaround for the hospital client to continue with business as usual during a malware attack.

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