Major Hospital System Hit With Cyberattack, Potentially Largest in US History

Here’s How the Pandemic Finally Ends ; Sequoyah, the US State That Almost Existed ; and More Picks

cybersecurity, hospital system attack, ransomware suspected
The author writes, “A major hospital chain has been hit by what appears to be one of the largest medical cyberattacks in US history. Computer systems for Universal Health Services — which has more than 400 locations, primarily in the US — began to fail over the weekend, and some hospitals had to resort to filing patient information using pen and paper, according to multiple people familiar with the situation.” Photo credit: Georgia National Guard / Flickr (CC BY 2.0)
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Here’s How the Pandemic Finally Ends (Dana)

The author writes, “[Experts] agree there’s a lot of fog left in the Covid-19 crystal ball, but most accept several likelihoods: At least one effective vaccine — hopefully several — will be approved in the U.S. by early next year. Producing and distributing a vaccine will take months, with the average American not receiving their dose (or doses) until at least mid- or late 2021. And while widespread inoculation will play a large role in bringing life back to normal, getting the shot will not be your cue to take off your mask and run free into a crowded bar. The end of the pandemic will be an evolution, not a revolution, the vaccine just another powerful tool in that process.”

Portland Officials Approved Giving Cops Federal Authority Past This Weekend. They Say They Didn’t Know (Reader Steve)

From the Oregonian: “When city of Portland officials agreed last week to allow police officers to be deputized as federal marshals for the weekend, they didn’t realize that they were approving the designation to last for at least the rest of the year, according to the city attorney. Now the city is asking the U.S. Attorney’s Office to remove the status from more than 50 officers who are part of a unit that typically responds to nightly protests.”

Post-COVID Heart Damage Alarms Researchers (Judy)

The author writes, “Dr. Ossama Samuel is a cardiologist at New York’s Mount Sinai Hospital, where he routinely sees coronavirus survivors who are contending with cardiac complications. Samuel said his team has treated three young and otherwise healthy coronavirus patients who have developed myocarditis — an inflammation of the heart muscle — weeks to months after recovering from the virus. … It is particularly dangerous for athletes, doctors say, because it can go undetected and can result in a heart attack during strenuous exercise. In recent weeks, some collegiate athletes have reported cardiac complications from the coronavirus, underscoring the seriousness of the condition.”

Sequoyah, the US State That Almost Existed (Dan)

From National Geographic: “Its name is derived from a Choctaw term for ‘red people,’ yet Oklahoma’s nickname — the Sooner State — comes from the white settlers who descended on it to claim Native lands. That tension is nothing new: Once divided into one territory for whites and another for Native Americans, Oklahoma has not buried the legacy of its frontier past. In July 2020, the Supreme Court ruled that, despite its location inside a U.S. state, much of eastern Oklahoma is an Indian reservation. The landmark decision is the latest foray in a long battle over who should own and inhabit Oklahoma’s prairies and mesas — a battle that almost led to Oklahoma becoming two different states.”

Giant Rat Wins Animal Hero Award for Sniffing Out Landmines (Dana)

The author writes, “A rat has for the first time won a British charity’s top civilian award for animal bravery, receiving the honor for searching out unexploded landmines in Cambodia. Magawa, a giant African pouched rat, was awarded the PDSA’s Gold Medal for his ‘lifesaving bravery and devotion’ after discovering 39 landmines and 28 items of unexploded ordinance in the past seven years, according to the charity.”

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