Ascension Health, nation's largest Catholic hospital chain, victim of cyberattack disrupting operations

Ascension Health said the attack was detected on Wednesday and that there had been a 'disruption to clinical operations'

The nation's largest chain of Catholic hospitals responded Wednesday to a cyberattack that has interrupted operations and patient care.

Ascension Health said it had "detected unusual activity" on its network systems and was investigating. 

"Our care teams are trained for these kinds of disruptions and have initiated procedures to ensure patient care delivery continues to be safe and as minimally impacted as possible," the health care provider said in a news release. "There has been a disruption to clinical operations, and we continue to assess the impact and duration of the disruption."

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Ascession Health hospital

Ascension Health, a chain of Catholic hospitals in the U.S., was the victim of a cyberattack that disrupted operations, the company said Wednesday. (Ascension / Fox News)

The company said it has engaged with Mandiant, a third-party expert, to assist in the investigation and that authorities were notified of the incident. 

Earlier this year, operations at insurance giant UnitedHealthcare and its affiliates were disrupted after a cyberattack.

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In April, UnitedHealth Group CEO Andrew Witty revealed new details about the cyberattack on its Change Healthcare unit earlier this year, and said the company has been working around the clock to fully restore its systems following the widespread outages from the attack.

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He said it could be months before UnitedHealth knows the full scope of the data breach.

FOX Business' Breck Dumas contributed to this report.