AHA Statement on HHS/DOL Letter to Providers About Change Healthcare Cyberattack

Rick Pollack
President and CEO
American Hospital Association

March 10, 2024

We welcome today’s letter from the Department of Health and Human Services and Department of Labor that recognizes the unprecedented nature of the Change Healthcare cyberattack and its far-reaching impacts on hospitals, physicians and the health care sector. We particularly appreciate the federal government’s call on UnitedHealth Group for increased transparency about this incident and urging the company to step up to take needed actions to provide meaningful payments to hospitals, physicians and other providers so that they can continue timely care for patients. 

It’s critical that all payers help providers during this incident to ensure patient care is not compromised. That includes easing administrative burdens, pausing prior authorizations and requirements on timely billing, and providing advanced payments to hospitals and physicians, among other things, until this issue is fully resolved. Just like the impacted providers, these payers are not responsible for the cyberattack; however, as hospitals and doctors have not wavered from their responsibility to care for their patients despite significant hardship, all payers must too honor their responsibility to support hospitals, physicians and patients for care delivered without delay.  

We recognize that the federal government does have statutory limitations to require private payers to take all the actions that may be needed, and Congress may need to take specific steps to ensure the health care system is not disrupted for patients. We will continue to work with Congress and policymakers as the impacts from the cyberattack persist.