Practice Fusion could charge physicians for using its software

A little more than a month after Allscripts acquired Practice Fusion for $100 million — a fraction of the software company's valuation — Practice Fusion is ditching its free software business model, CNBC reports.

Practice Fusion recently began warning its customers that its free service will convert to subscription-based payments beginning this summer. Physicians will reportedly have to pay $100 per month to use its software. However, the company has not yet made this change public, CNBC reports.

A Practice Fusion spokesperson hinted at the new business model and told CNBC that as part of its mission, the company has "been offering some features and services to our customers at no cost while other solutions and services offered do involve reasonable prices. … We have a product announcement upcoming in early March, and we look forward to sharing it further with you and all of our stakeholders very soon," the company told CNBC.

This new business model is a drastic change in the way Founder and ex-CEO Ryan Howard originally positioned the company. Mr. Howard praised Practice Fusion's free product and promised it would never cost customers money to use it. In 2013, he told Medgaget, "Practice Fusion will always be free," before he was ousted in 2015 when the company failed to meet its financial goals.

Practice Fusion has been most popular among small physician groups, but its user base has grown to nearly 100,000 healthcare professionals, according to CNBC.

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