Epic proposes support dogs to ease go-live stress in April Fools' Day prank

Epic restructured its home page April 1 to advertise an unconventional resource to promote staff well-being — IT support dogs.

The April Fools' Day prank, which centered on easing stress on hospital staff during software go-lives, promoted a new program to train service dogs for a "dual role of at-the-elbow emotional support and simple problem ticket resolution."

The pilot program, which had purportedly rolled out to four Wisconsin healthcare facilities, received mixed reviews from clinical staff. In a mock testimonial posted to the EHR giant's website, one nurse shared, "I had a printer issue and the pup just kind of tilted his head at the screen. He ended up resting his chin on my knee until human support came."

The nurse concluded, "Even just that … it really helped!"

Epic's website has since been replaced with the company's standard home page.

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