Hospitals across Georgia have faced cyber and ransomware attacks in recent years, including in Houston County, Columbus, Savannah, Cordele, and Tifton
Washington, D.C. — A bipartisan bill championed by U.S. Senator Jon Ossoff to protect rural hospitals across Georgia from cybersecurity threats has passed a key Senate Committee.
The bipartisan Rural Hospital Cybersecurity Enhancement Act would create new strategy and training resources to boost the number of cybersecurity and digital security professionals in rural hospitals across Georgia and nationwide. The bill passed the U.S. Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee and now heads to the full Senate for consideration.
“Rural hospitals across Georgia face an enormous range of challenges, and ransomware and cybersecurity threats are top of mind for these often less well-resourced institutions,” Sen. Ossoff said. “And today, we’ve moved this bipartisan bill to protect rural hospitals from cyber-attack through the committee on a bipartisan basis.”
Rural hospitals in Georgia and across the country face unique challenges protecting critical information technology systems without the same level of resources as larger hospitals. Rising cyber threats, including ransomware attacks, place rural hospitals and their patients in a vulnerable situation.
For example, cyberattacks can keep smaller hospitals from running efficiently by blocking them from submitting insurance claims, accessing vital patient services, and leading them to recovery costs that many medical facilities cannot afford.
Sen. Ossoff continues to work to address the rising threat of cybersecurity threats and guaranteeing the safety of all Georgians. Last year, Sen. Ossoff’s bipartisan bill to boost cybersecurity job training at HBCUs was signed into law.
Please find a transcript of Sen. Ossoff’s remarks at the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee below.
SEN. OSSOFF: “Thank you, Mr. Chairman. And I want to thank you and Senator Hawley for your work on our bipartisan Rural Hospital Cybersecurity Enhancement Act. Rural hospitals across Georgia face an enormous range of challenges, and ransomware and cybersecurity threats are top of mind for these often less well-resourced institutions.
“And today, we’ve moved this bipartisan bill to protect rural hospitals from cyber-attack through the committee on a bipartisan basis. And I look forward to continuing to work with you to move that legislation to and beyond the Senate floor.
“Thank you, Mr. Chairman.”