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We maintain our Neutral rating for Allscripts Healthcare Solutions, Inc. (MDRX - Analyst Report). Its second quarter earnings per share of 13 cents missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate by a penny. Reported net income for the quarter was $8.0 million (or 4 cents per share) compared with a net income of $15.9 million (or 8 cents per share) in the prior-year quarter.

Revenues came in at $370.0 million, up 3.7% year over year in the second quarter, surpassing the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $369 million.

Bookings in the quarter were $194.1 million, a decrease of 20.6%. Bookings have again fallen in the second quarter of 2012 as clients wait for clarity on product updates and product integration. We believe that the weakness in bookings may be specific to the company.

The health care information technology market is competitive and price sensitive. Among others, Allscripts faces strong competition from Cerner Corporation (CERN - Analyst Report), Quality Systems (QSII - Analyst Report) and Athenahealth (ATHN - Analyst Report).

However, optimism about the growth prospects of select HCIT service providers remains high under the Obama administration, which passed a Stimulus package in 2009. Part of the Stimulus package is aimed at increasing the use of EHR systems by medical practitioners. While greenfield opportunities are currently shrinking, the replacement market is growing.

The company has widened its user base after its mergers with Misys and Eclipsys and increased cross-selling opportunities. We believe that Allscripts is well positioned in the fast growing business of selling EHR to physician practices as well as inpatient settings.

We are of the opinion that acute and ambulatory care will continue to converge in future. Also, that Allscripts is positioned to provide integrated clinical applications for health care providers to satisfy HITECH Act requirements and eventually comply with an outcomes-based reimbursement system.

We have a long-term Neutral recommendation on Allscripts. The stock currently retains a Zacks #2 Rank, which translates into a short-term Buy rating.
 

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