All Hype, No Substance
This article fails to mention the significant concerns that exist about Practice Fusion (PF):
1. PF has gone through close to $90million and has yet to make a profit. Some may point to the fact that Amazon and Facebook do not or did not initially display large profits. However, there is one key difference, the other two companies have huge market share.
2. Speaking of market share, PF has about 2% of US physicians using their software, or about 16K doctors (Medscape 2012 EHR Slide Show). $90million and only 2% market share! PF just obtained an additional $60million in funding and the CEO wants to "double its users". So then PF will spend close to $150million to get 4% market share? These are not very good numbers. PF likes to obscure the facts about its user base by stating terms like "100,000 healthcare workers". Remember, doctors represent only 16K of this number. The rest are nurses, medical assistants, billers, receptionists, etc. I strongly suspect the reason PF needed the additional $60million is because the company is burning through cash at a crazy pace.
3. PF has no billing component. Ask any physician who has had separate EMR and billing systems and they will tell you that getting the two interfaced is torture. It is not unheard of for physicians to lose several months revenue due to lack of connectivity. Again $90million spent and no billing component.
4. PF recently came under harsh criticism from physicians and patients for not being clear on its posting of reviews by patients of doctors. PF sent out emails to patients that appeared to have originated by the physician. The patients then replied, often giving personal medical information as well as demographic data. The patient responses were then posted in a public forum. Examples of disaster postings include patients who wrote about genital itching and those who received emails at work addressed from psychiatrists.
When doctors complained, PF deleted negative physician comments from its on line physician discussion forums. There stands a good chance the Department of Health and Human Services will begin an investigation for a massive HIPAA violation.
5. Here is the most troubling fact of all: PF has a lousy EMR. I am a physician and registered for their product. I never made it past the demo. I found the software to be clunky and not at all user friendly.
Overall, I am not at all optimistic that this company can remain viable.