‘There’s room for a lot of error:’ SouthCoast employee says management hasn’t said anything about phone issues

Published: Jul. 6, 2023 at 5:45 PM EDT
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - WTOC is hearing from an employee of SouthCoast Health about the company’s ongoing issues.

The SouthCoast Health employee to asked to remain anonymous out of fear of retaliation. They say they are stressed the patients aren’t getting the treatment they deserve and neither is the staff.

They say they’ve been left in the dark about what’s causing the system being down, but has a good idea about what’s going on.

“There’s room for a lot of error.”

A SouthCoast employee says they were told the system went offline on June 19th.

And ever since, they’ve had to make a lot of changes, according to the employee. They’re worried errors can be made at any time.

“Because we’re doing everything on paper, something could be lost. Something could not get done, we could miss something.”

No phones and no internet. The employee worried sensitive information could be compromised.

“We’re also working on Verizon hotspots, which I feel like is very unsafe to work off of a hotspot in the medical field.”

They also say, without computers, working hours aren’t being tracked.

“I work different hours every week. They paid us what we got paid the week before.”

On June 22nd, the employee says all staff were sent this letter. It thanks them for the care they’re providing patients, but says if “the dollar amount does not match your hours worked, any discrepancies will be reconciled on a next pay check.”

So what is causing all of this? The employee says the company’s leaders are quiet.

“Management has not told us anything.”

Meanwhile, this employee says the staff is hearing something went wrong.

“I was informed by co-workers that the system was hacked.”

That employee letter also says staff has to tell patients “we’ve taken the phones down temporarily and we do not have a timetable to restore phone access.”

WTOC called a number for a SouthCoast representative listed on that letter and left a voicemail.

“I feel as though they care more about not losing money. I don’t think they care about the patients.”

WTOC checked data from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and there’s no data breach of unsecured protected health information reported by SouthCoast under an investigation.

But, they do have 60 days from when the breach happened to report the it to the Office of Civil Rights.