I have worked on a variety of broadcast programmes and consultancy projects. These range from long running Primetime Unscripted, Live Studio, Features, Physical & Adventure Game shows, Fact Entertainment, Comedy Panel shows, Cookery Shows, Quiz Shows, Documentary, Sport OB, Live Music, Live Events, Fixed Rig and Reality shows.
I have strong relationships with UK, US and International production companies and networks / broadcasters.
I’ve worked with teams and budgets of all sizes. Working in Sport and Unscripted I have set up and consulted on projects internationally.
I have launched, delivered and managed the International roll out of NBC hit format Game of Games, and Fox hit format Mental Samurai.
International Producers I worked with on the development and production of Game of Games;
Germany | Spain | Portugal | Australia | Thailand | Finland | Sweden |UK | Dubai / Lebanon | Greece | Italy | Belgium | France | China | Canada | Hungary | Latin America | Phillipines | Tunisia
I have spent time consulting on the set up of international hubs in Europe for Producers and 3rd parties.
I’m confident in launching, consulting and running the most difficult of productions both in the UK and internationally.
I have extensive experience in budgeting, scheduling, recruiting and managing teams, overseas filming, multi-cam, live OBs, PSC, OB, UHD, archive, compliance, insurance, H&S, and working with high profile talent and contributors.
I pride myself on my team management skills and always work in a calm and pragmatic manner. I am not daunted by any situation and I possess a friendly manner, which is always key in keeping a handle on all situations. I thrive on the challenge of creating and launching new projects.
I have held senior management roles;
International Consultant (Warner Bros International), Production Consultant (Syco & Shed), Head of Production (Outline Productions), Deputy Head of Production (Shine), Production Executive (Magnum, Olga, Alaska, STV, Studio Ramsey, Second Star, Electric Ray, Aphetor), Production Executive (Endemol), Unit Manager (Initial).
I am dedicated to managing teams to work to tight budgets and creative schedules, maintaining communication between all departments, developing project branding, working with cross-platform departments, and delivering consistent style, design and editorial themes.
Having worked as part of the the Executive team on Big Brother and together with the formidable team, ran a ground breaking digital multi-platform event. This series was run by a 24/7 production crew, so I understand the importance of communication skills across all team and broadcaster departments.
I have dealt with my fair share of compliance issues and am constantly looking for new ideas and quality in my work and enjoys using my creative skills to ensure that each programme is on budget, gets recommissioned and thrives on teamwork.
I have also worked closely on project managing and consultation appraisals for companies, so can locate where potential problem areas for productions (hopefully). Having started in low Budget television I am confident I can manage any programme despite budgetary or schedule restrictions.
I’ve been key to the teams on these primetime shows (and worked on many pilots and the development of many large scale entertainment projects);
Game of Games (International), Masterchef (BBC2), Big Brother (C4), Celebrity Big Brother (C4), The Bafta Film Awards (ITV/BBC), Fame Academy (BBC), The Paralympics (BBC), The Commonwealth Games (BBC), Bring The Noise (SKY1), House of Tiny Tearaways (BBC3), The Priory (C4), The Simpsons Quiz Show (C4), The Lottery Show (BBC1).
I am a positive and creative thinker, I’m fast moving, have good judgement and strong communication skills
I have the ability to manage my own time and workload, including being able to adapt to changing priorities and deadlines in a fast-paced environment
WHY SET UP PRODUCTION HUBS ?
Running a production hub ensures strategic development of crews and production space, in line with the needs of the market
They are key to streamlining production knowledge of formats between Producers and Technical teams
They offer a way to secure investment in the production, or fast track a network commission
The production incentives landscape is highly active, and countries offer tax incentives for setting up large scale productions
INTERNATIONAL PRODUCTION CONSULTANT SERVICES
Knowledge and latest information of local tax incentives;
Knowledge of government relations for production development and infrastructure
Knowledge of business practice locally
I can advise on the planning of master leases of facilities
I have experience / expert knowledge in physical production management
I have knowledge of production facilities and service companies and vendors in diff markets
I can provide contract management, negotiation skills, business development
I have extensive experience and knowledge of production processes across Europe
An understanding of COVID-19 restrictions in production spaces and during filming
INTERNATIONAL PRODUCTION CONSULTANT DELIVERY
Planning, structuring and delivering project research, analysis, budgets, business plans and recommendations in the form of written deliverables, and client meetings
I can assist in the running of client meetings and facilitating project workshops between small stakeholder groups
I am continuously learning and and keep up to date on relevant market trends, industry news, and technical tools
I can make informed business decisions, and lead with confidence and influence in the context of TV production
I have an understanding of the production business environment and the challenges needed to enhance my clients competitive advantage
I have a strong network of industry professionals and contacts
LOCAL TAX INCENTIVES
High-end TV production can offer countries economic impact, employment, work-force, skills and infrastructure development, and benefits such as screen tourism and national branding
I can apply knowledge of corporate income taxes, VAT, PAYE, NIC and obligations arising under the Foreign Entertainers Unit (FEU)
I can research the best financing plan, whilst looking at local incentives covering up to 25% of eligible expenditure
Many countries around the world offer sizeable and refundable R&D Research & Development tax credits where a business is undertaking eligible R&D activities (as prescribed in the relevant tax law of that country)
If you have any articles or guidelines that can be added to this post, please leave a comment with the details or the link below.
Please note this is not an ‘approved’ list, this is a collated list of published guidelines from UK industry bodies. Please refer to the publisher/ industry body with any feedback relating to the documents and information below. Many thanks.
Brighton-based creative agency Tilt has created a short film to demonstrate how productions can follow Covid-19 shooting guidelines.
Please note the BBC or SGC is not responsible for the contents of external websites.
Pact have produced a variety of resources and information including the COVID-19 Job Retention Scheme and Self Employed Income Support Scheme. They are also producing a series of weekly webinars for their members rounding-up the latest sector-specific updates and answering questions. Find out more on the website
ScreenSkills are working with WiFTV, BECTU and RTS to set up a wide programme of free remote training including workshops, meet ups, mental health support, financial and career advice and coaching and counselling. Find out more on the screen skills website
The Film and TV Charity offer financial assistance, wellbeing support, and advice. They provide 24/7 mental health support to the industry via the Support Line 0800 054 00 00 or using Live Chat. They have also set up the Covid-19 Film and TV Emergency Relief Fund. The fund will be open to those working in production, distribution and exhibition. Visit the Film and TV Charity website
Creative Scotland have announced two new Bridging Bursary programmes – a Creative Scotland Bridging Bursary Fund to help sustain creative practice by freelance creative professionals who have lost earnings due to the cancelation of work as a result of COVID-19 and a parallel Screen Scotland Bridging Bursary Fund will provide similar one-off bursary support to self-employed screen sector workers. Visit the website
The UK Screen Alliance Guidance for Safe Working in Post Production and VFX during the COVID-19 Pandemic was produced in consultation with the following organisations:
The British Film Institute Screen Sector Task Force, The British Film Commission, COVID-19 Recovery Group Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport HSE (Health & Safety Executive), Pact, BECTU, Several US Studios, 5A Studios Aquarium Studios, Automatik VFX, Boom Cheat, Cinesite, Clear Cut Pictures, Envy, The Farm, Fifty Fifty Post, Fitzrovia Audio Post Production, Framestore, Glassworks, Gorilla TV, Grand Central Studios, Halo Post, Hireworks, Independent Post, Jellyfish Pictures, LMH, Lipsync Post, Molinare, Moonraker VFX, MPC, Roundtable Post, Salon, Silversalt Restoration, Storm TV,Technicolor, The Finish Line, West Digital, Wiggin
If your company has found this Guidance document useful and would like to be added to the list above please contact UK Screen Alliance
I have extensive experience sourcing Studios and spaces in and around London. I can help you finding your ideal locations for a shoot, negotiate fees, terms and permission and if required manage the location during the shoot.
ALASKA TV – Executive / Consultant – Studio Entertainment Format
OLGA – Production Executive – Development – Studio Entertainment Format
BBC EVENTS – Production Executive – Various Live Events
STUDIO RAMSAY – Production Executive – Development Factual Ent Series
MAGNUM – Production Executive – Studio Pilot
LOVE PRODUCTIONS – Production Executive- Development Live Music Series
STV – Production Executive – Development Natural History Series
APHETOR – Consultant – Development Physical Game Show – International Shoot
OUTLINE PRODUCTIONS – Production Executive – Fixed Rig Reality Series
SECOND STAR – Producer – Development Music Fact Ent Series
WARNER BROS INTERNATIONAL TELEVISION (WBTIVP) – International Consultant – NBC – Primetime Series Ellen’s Game of Games
WARNER BROS INTERNATIONAL TELEVISION (WBTIVP) – International Consultant – FOX – Primetime Series – Mental Samurai
ELECTRIC RAY – Head of Production cover
SECOND STAR – Line Producer – Music Entertainment Show
STV – Line Producer – Physical Reality Series International Shoot
SONY TELEVISION – Production Executive – Physical Adventure Format –
OBJECTIVE MEDIA GROUP – Production Executive – Crime Recon Documentary
RACONTEUR ASSOCIATES – Production Executive – Fact Ent Make over series
TWENTYSIX03 | SKY 1 -Line Producer on the new Primetime Friday night music studio based & comedy show for Sky 1 (Studio Show)
OLGA TV | ITV Production Exec cover for Head of Production on The Paul O Grady Show (Studio Show)
FOUNDER Creative Bus Stop : Cultural Event Listings website for London Kids (Entrepreneur)
EVENT CONSULTANT Millfield OM Foundation Ball for 1200 people at The Grosvernor House Hotel, 2015 (Event)
OUTLINE PRODUCTIONS. Head of Production. Worked closely with MD’s Laura Mansfield and Helen Veale restructuring the company.
SYCO |SHED MEDIA | Production Consultant. Working with Executives at SHED, producing a presentation and budget for a unique, large scale, long term project. (Reality/ Event)
SHINE | Deputy Head of Production
SHINE | DONT MOVE IMPROVE Production Executive on this new series for ITV1. TX 2005 (30×45). (Location Show)
SHINE | DIAL M (PILOT) Line Producer on this studio pilot for BBC1 Entertainment( 1 x 45 STUDIO).
SHINE | THE SIMPSONS QUIZ SHOW Line Producer on this first series studio show for C4 (1 x 45 STUDIO). TX 2004. (Studio Show)
SHINE | BUILD A NEW LIFE Production Executive on this first series for C5. TX 2005. (12 x 60). (Location based)
SHINE | MASTERCHEF – GOES LARGE Production Executive, Developed and negotiated this first studio & location based series. BBC2. TX 2005. (30 x 30)
SHINE | NICE HOUSE, SHAME ABOUT THE GARDEN Production Executive, First Series of this features show for C5. TX 2005 (8 x 30). (Location based)
ITV | THE MINISTRY OF MAYHEM Line Producer for the production of titles and graphics for this new ITV Saturday morning children’s show. Producer – Steve Kidgell (Studio show)
INITIAL (Part of Endemol)46664 THE CONCERT Production Manager – International Clients and crews for this worldwide event based in Cape Town on 29/11/03. Producer – Lisa Chapman (Music/ Events)
2DTV | ITV BOGNOR OR BUST Line Producer for 2DTV on this pilot for the ITV Network, hosted by Angus Deayton. Giles Pilbrow – Producer, Joanna Beresford, MD. (Studio show)
FULL FRONTAL FASHION Production of PSC shoots for London Fashion Week, 2003. (Location/ Event)
DARRYL MACQUEEN | ITV SATURDAY MORNING SHOW PITCH Budget Consultation for Darryll Maqueen on this pitch for the ITV network. (Studio show)
ITV CHILDREN’S PILOT Consultation for a leading animation company on this project for the ITV network. (Studio show)
AT IT PRODUCTIONS : SELECT-A-BEAU Line Producer for these 9 shows for Sky’s music channel FLAUNT, working to AT IT Executive Producer – Chris Fouracre (Music/ Studio/ Events)
LION TELEVSION | FASHION HOUSE: Production Consultant for Lion Television on this reality based fast turn around show for C4. Working to Series Producer – Nikki Wardell (Reality/ Event)
AT IT PRODUCTIONS| T4 (SATURDAY AND SUNDAY) Line Producer for AT IT Productions, overseeing the new infra-structure and designing production systems for T4 for Channel 4. Working to Executive Producer – Tamsin Summers and Head of Production – Paul Day (Music/ Events)
C4/ ENDEMOL : BIG BROTHER 3 TITLES Producer working with Titles Director Chris Howe for Endemol UK Head of Reality – Phil Edgar Jones (Studio show)
ENDEMOL |CELEBRITY BIG BROTHER TITLES Producer working with Director Chris Howe for Endemol UK Head of Reality – Phil Edgar Jones (Studio show)
C4/ UMTV : BOYS AND GIRLS TITLES Producer working with Director Chris Howe for UMTV Executive Producer – Chris Evans (Studio show)
UMTV | TERRY & GABY TITLES Producer working with Director Chris Howe for UMTV Executive Producer – Chris Evans (Promo)
ITV/ TALKBACK : DESIGN WARS Production Consultation for Talkback’s ITV reality, daytime commission working with Series Producer – Wendy Rattray (Location/ Reality)
C4/ UMTV : BOYS & GIRLS – (SAT SHOW, FRIDAY SHOW, E4 SHOW) Line Producer – Boys & Girls Live Saturday Show. Boys & Girls Friday. Boys & Girls Do It With Dougie. Series 1 of Live Primetime Entertainment show for Channel 4 – 2003. Series Producer – Rob Clark (Studio show)
ENDEMOL |CELEBRITY BIG BROTHER 2 Unit Manager – working closely with the Executive Team and all production staff and crew on the prep. and production of Series 2 of the 24 hr daily coverage and daily live shows for Channel 4. Editor – Helen Hawken (Studio show)
WALL TO WALL | CELEBRITY EDWARDIAN COUNTRY HOUSE Unit Manager – Budget preparation of this Wall to Wall proposal for Channel 4.
ENDEMOL | FAME ACADEMY LAUNCH SHOW Unit Manager – Budget development and consultation for this BBC1 Event. MD – Laurence Jones (Studio show)
ENDEMOL| BIG BROTHER 3 Unit Manager – Management of 3 management teams, covering daily shows, Live Eviction shows, and location and house supervision. Exec.P – Phil Edgar Jones
INITIAL | THE BAFTA FILM AWARDS 2001& 2002 Production Executive & Production Manager ( 2001 show ) of these Initial Events. Broadcaster, BBC1 & Sky One contact for all budgetary issues. Producer – Lisa Chapman
INITIAL | FEAR FACTOR ( DEV) Budget and broadcaster negotiating /approval. EP – Tim Hincks
INITIAL | SPY TV ( DEV) Budget and broadcaster negotiating / approval. EP – Dominic English (Location Show)
INITIAL | Q AWARDS Production Executive. Overseeing commission negotiation and production set up. Producer – Katherine Allen (Event show)
INITIAL | PRODUCTION EXECUTIVE : Working to MD – Laurence Jones developing, staffing, managing and negotiating Music Events and Music programme proposals and factual ent. Productions – often last minute problem solving! (Location/ Events/ Studio/ Reality)
INITIAL | C4 BREAKFAST SHOW PILOT Unit Manager of Endemol/ ITN bid for new C4 breakfast slot. Working closely with ITN HoD to produce 2 hr pilot within very tight schedule. Editors – Dominic English & Peter Barron (Studio show)
INITIAL | BAR WARS Production Manager – Set Up 2nd largest international location based production for Initial Television. C4 & E4. EP – Tim Hincks (Location)
INITIAL/ THE PEOPLE’S AWARDS | BBC1 Production Manager – Initial for BBC 1 Second largest TV & Music Event of 2000 recorded at Royal Albert Hall. Series Producer – Martin Scott (Event Show)
RDF TELEVISION | ALL SORTS Production Manager -RDF for Channel 4. 60 x 30 mins comedy lifestyle for Daytime. EP – Matthew Frank (Location Show)
API | BBC : PARALYMPICS, SYDNEY Production Manager -BBC 12 x 1 hour full coverage of 2000 & 1996 Paralympics from Olympic Park. EP – Gary Imlach (Event Show)
RDF TELEVISION |ONE SMALL STEP Production Manager -RDF for Channel 4. 1x 180 mins live studio show about the Apollo Landings. EP – David Frank (Studio)
ABSOLUTELY PRODUCTIONS. THE JACK DOCHERTY SHOW Production Manager -Series for Absolutely Prod. for C5. EP – Phil Edgar Jones (Studio Show)
GINGER TELEVISION |C4 : THE PRIORY Production Manager -Ginger TV for C4 (LIVE Series ) 1 hour celebrity chat show- multi camera OB with live music, presented by Zoe Ball & Jamie Theakston. EP – Phil Edgar Jones (Studio)
C4/ INITIAL (part of Endemol) : DO NOT SLEEP Production Manager -Initial TV – 4 hour LIVE show for C4Later TX 23.12.00 from Sound Republic. Producer – Jo Pilkington (Studio)
GINGER TELEVISION | BBC1 : RED ALERT & NATIONAL LOTTERY : Production Manager -Ginger TV for BBC 1 Multicamera Studio Lottery Show (LIVE Series) with Lulu. EP – Dave Granger (Studio)
VTV | BBC 1 : PARALYMPICS, SYDNEY Production Manager – working to Editor on this daily coverage for BBC Sport. EP – Trevor Morris (Event/ Sports)
RDF TELEVSION : DREAM TICKET Production Manager -RDF for LWT Series 10 x 30 minute Travel Show. EP – Matthew Frank (Location)
API TV : COMMONWEALTH GAMES ’99, MALAYSIA Production Manager -API TV for Worldwide Daily Highlights programme, produced in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. EP – David Mannion (Event/Sports)
INTERFERENCE/ C4 : PINK PLANET Production Manager – Pilot Gay travel show for C4, Just TV and Interference Productions. (Location/ Travel)
ACTION TIME : 1 TO 3 Action Time for Sky One – Production Coordinator. EP – Peter Usher (Studio)
HYBRID | NRG. Presenter, Aerobics show for HYBRID TV. (Location)
ACTION TIME | THE LIVE SIX SHOW Action Time for Sky One – Production Coordinator. EP – Peter Usher (Studio/ Location)
TWI | OLYMPIC TELEVISION ARCHIVE BUREAU : Archive researcher, working in this department at TWI. (Event/ Sports)
TWI | ATP TENNIS : Production Assistant, on this international show for TWI.
ACTION TIME | STARSTRUCK Production Coordinator on this pilot. Action Time Ltd.,
HYBRID/ HOME TRUTH’S : Production Manager, children’s studio show. Action Time for Carlton. Producer – Lisa Edwards. (Studio)
API TELEVISION : PARALYMPICS, ATLANTA Researcher/ Coordinator on this 2 week daily highlight show for BBC1. EP – Trevor Morris (Event/ Sports)
TRANSWORLD INTERNATIONAL (TWI) Researcher and Librarian : various duties at this successful Sports Production Company (Event/ Sports)
HYBRID TV (part of HTV West)Year Long Apprentice Program : Producer, Researcher, Studio Coordinator, Stylist, Floor Manager : worked with Sacha Baron Cohen on his first ever TV show. (Studio/ Location)
Myself and colleagues, offer productions from all over the world a stress free shoot, production or event in the United Kingdom.
These are the areas or Production I have expertise in;
Hiring production personnel for TV
Technical/ Camera Crew hire
Camera/ Audio and Lighting hire
Designers and Art Direction hire
Location Sourcing and Management
Post Production & Graphics
Music & Archive Clearance
Hospitality & Wrap Parties
Casting Agents & Talent Agents
Health & Safety
Hotel and Travel
Unit Drivers and Airport Transfers
I am a one stop service for Film & TV Production no matter how big or small your production is.
With 20 years television experience, I am able to offer you a full range of services that will facilitate your production needs for television, film or events.
I can assist companies within the UK and from overseas with all your production needs.
As each shoot or event will vary in size and budget, my rates will be specific to your filming requirements. Please call or email today telling me exactly what you need and I will provide you with a tailor-made quote.
To count towards the regional production quota by hours, relevant productions must meet two out of the following three criteria:
(1) Substantive base
The commissioned production company must have a substantive business and production base in the UK outside the M25, and the production in question must be managed from that substantive base.
The base will be taken to be substantive if it is the usual place of employment of:
executives managing the regional business; and
senior personnel involved in the production in question; and
senior personnel involved in seeking programme commissions.
(2) Production spend
At least 70% of the production spend must be spent in the UK outside the M25.
Production spend should be based on the entire production expenditure including any funding from third parties and spend outside the UK, and excluding the cost of on-screen talent, archive material, sports rights, competition prize-money, copyright costs and any production fee (other than where some of the production fee is used to fund the costs of the production). Legal fees count as relevant spend.
(3) Off-screen talent
At least 50% of the production talent (i.e. not on-screen talent) by cost must have their usual place of employment in the UK outside the M25. Freelancers without a usual place of employment outside the M25 will nonetheless count for this purpose if they live outside the M25.
Quarantining will help prevent family, friends and the community from contracting coronavirus, as well as helping to protect the NHS
What is Test-to-Release?
Any Travellers arriving into the UK must undergo a mandatory 10 day quarantine as per current Government Guidelines. This quarantine period can be reduced to 5 days by producing a negative result using the government approved Test-to-Release scheme on day 5 of your arrival.
How the Test to Release scheme works
If you arrive in England from somewhere outside the UK, Ireland, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man you must quarantine for 10 days on arrival.
Under the Test to Release scheme you can choose to pay for a private COVID-19 test. If the result is negative, you can end your quarantine.
You cannot take a test until you have been in England for 5 full days.
The scheme is voluntary and applies to those quarantining in England only.
If you do not want to opt into the Test to Release scheme, you will need to quarantinefor 10 days.
You will be asked to enter details of your test in the passenger locator form. You must do this to take part in the scheme.
When do I book the tests?
You should book your test before you travel to England. This is so you can enter details of the test when you opt into the scheme on the passenger locator form. If you decide to take part in the scheme after you have arrived in England, you will need to complete another passenger locator form.
Do I pay for the test myself?
Yes, You will have to pay the private test provider for your test. You will need to book an individual test for each person opting into Test to Release, including children.
The test provider will either send a test to your address or you can attend a testing site. You may leave your house to post your test or to travel directly to and from the testing site. You should follow safer travel guidance and avoid public transport if possible.
What do I do If me test is negative?
If the test result is negative you can stop quarantine as soon as you receive the result.
What do I do If I test positive for COVID-19?
If the test is positive you need to quarantine for another 10 days. Count the 10 days starting from the day after you took the test, or from when you first had symptoms if that is earlier.
People you live with in the UK, or people you are staying with, should also quarantine for 10 days from the date of your positive test.
You do not need to take the coronavirus test on or after day 8.
What happens if my test is inconclusive?
If the result from your test is inconclusive you must continue to quarantine. You can choose to take another privately provided test to find out if you can stop quarantine early.
You may be fined if you do not quarantine. The fine is £1,000 for the first time, up to £10,000 for further breaches.
The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine contains an artificially generated portion of viral mRNA (messenger ribonucleic acid). This carries the specific genetic instructions for your body to make the coronavirus’s “spike protein”, against which your body mounts a protective immune response.
The current gold-standard diagnostic test is known as nucleic acid PCR testing. This looks for the mRNA (genetic material) of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. This is a marker of current infection.
This is the test the vast majority of people have when they line up at a drive-through testing clinic, or attend a COVID clinic at their local hospital.
Yes, the Pfizer vaccine contains mRNA. But the mRNA it uses is only a small part of the entire viral RNA. It also cannot make copies of itself, which would be needed for it to be in sufficient quantity to be detected. So it cannot be detected by a PCR test.
The AstraZeneca vaccine also only contains part of the DNA but is inserted in an adenovirus carrier that cannot replicate so cannot give you infection or a positive PCR test.
3. How about antibody testing?
While PCR testing is used to look for current infection, antibody testing — also known as serology testing — picks up past infections.
Laboratories look to see if your immune system has raised antibodies against the coronavirus, a sign your body has been exposed to it. As it takes time for antibodies to develop, testing positive with an antibody test may indicate you were infected weeks or months ago.
But your body also produces antibodies as a response to vaccination. That’s the way it can recognise SARS-CoV-2, the next time it meets it, to protect you from severe COVID.
So as COVID vaccines are rolled out, and people develop a vaccine-induced antibody response, it may become difficult to differentiate between someone who has had COVID in the past and someone who was vaccinated a month ago. But this will depend on the serology test used.
The good news is that antibody testing is not nearly as common as PCR testing. And it’s only ordered under limited and rare circumstances.
For instance, when someone tests positive with PCR, but they are a false positive due to the characteristics of the test, or have fragments of virus lingering in the respiratory tract from an old infection, public health experts might request an antibody test to see whether that person was infected in the past. They might also order an antibody test during contact tracing of cases with an unknown source of infection.
4. If I get vaccinated, do I still need a COVID test if I have symptoms?
Yes, we will continue to test for COVID as long as the virus is circulating anywhere in the world.
Even though the COVID vaccines are looking promising in preventing people from getting seriously sick or dying, they won’t provide 100% protection.
Real-world data suggests some vaccinated people can still catch the virus, but they usually only get mild disease. We are unsure whether vaccinated people will be able to potentially pass it to others, even if they don’t have any symptoms. So it’s important people continue to get tested.
Furthermore, not everyone will be eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine. For instance, in Australia, current guidelines exclude people under 16 years of age, and those who are allergic to ingredients in the vaccine. And although pregnant women are not ruled out from receiving the vaccine, it is not routinely recommended. This means a proportion of the population will remain susceptible to catching the virus.
We also are unsure about how effective vaccines will be against emerging SARS-CoV-2 variants. So we will continue to test to ensure people are not infected with these strains.
We know testing, detecting new cases early and contact tracing are the core components of the public health response to COVID, and will continue to be a priority from a public health perspective.
Minimum numbers of daily COVID tests are also needed so we can be confident the virus is not circulating in the community. As an example, New South Wales aims for 8,000 or more tests a day to maintain this peace of mind.
Continued vigilance and high rates of testing for COVID will also be important as we enter the flu season. That’s because the only way to differentiate between COVID and influenza (or any other respiratory infection) is via testing.
5. Will testing for COVID stop as time goes on?
It is unlikely our approach to COVID testing will change in the immediate future. However, as COVID vaccines are rolled out and since COVID is likely to become endemic and stay with us for a long time, the acute response phase to the pandemic will end.
So COVID testing may become part of managing other infectious diseases and part of how we respond to other ongoing health priorities.
Close Contact Cohorts and increased screening for COVID-19 – protocol for TV production
The document above…
…builds on the industry wide guidelines (TV Production Guidance Managing The Risk of Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Production Making) which outline a high-level framework for the effective assessment and management of Coronavirus (COVID-19) risk in TV production.
if you have family members or other household members living with you. In line with the medical advice they must remain in self-isolation for the rest of the 10-day period from when your symptoms began
if you have had any close contact with anyone other than members of your household. We are interested in in the 48 hours before you developed symptoms and the time since you developed symptoms. Close contact means:
having face-to-face contact with someone less than 1 metre away (this will include times where you have worn a face covering or a face mask)
having been within 2 metres of someone for more than 15 minutes (either as a one-off contact, or added up together over one day)
travelling in a car or other small vehicle with someone (even on a short journey) or close to them on a plane
if you work in – or have recently visited – a setting with other people (for example, a GP surgery, a school or a workplace). The use of face masks and other forms PPE does not exclude somebody from being considered a close contact, unless they are providing direct care with patients or residents in a health and care setting
We will ask you to provide, where possible, the names and contact details (for example, email address, telephone number) for the people you have had close contact with. As with your own details these will be held in strict confidence and will be kept and used only in line with data protection laws.
If NHS Test and Trace identify you as a contact and you work in a critical service where the recommendation for you to self-isolate would have impact on providing that critical service, your employer will need to escalate this to the local health protection team (HPT) for a risk-assessment.
What are the different types of testing available?
PCR Testing is the most sensitive test that is currently available, able to detect active infection some days before the patient is infectious or symptomatic. It is the gold standard test; used in the NHS daily. PCR testing has a turnaround time of up to 48 hours. It is performed in machines than cycle through different temperatures. As the process of changing temperature takes some time, the process is longer than other processes such as LAMP.
LAMP Testing is another form of genetic test, able to detect the RNA of the virus. It is a more recent development than PCR and is performed all at one temperature. It is generally faster and cheaper than PCR but is not considered to be as sensitive – but is still more sensitive than antigen testing. LAMP tests might be able to detect patients immediately before symptoms are displayed but this is unsure at present. Rapid LAMP testing can add a significant degree of confidence if performed before flying, for example, when all aboard have had a LAMP test prior to departure.
Antigen Testing is the fastest and cheapest of all lab tests for COVID-19. Unlike PCR and LAMP, the genetic material of the virus is not searched for, but rather the protein structures on a virally infected cell produced by COVID-19; usually the so-called ‘spike’ protein. Antigen tests often become positive after having had symptoms for a couple of days. Their use is particularly powerful when patients are attending communal events and a quick check needs to be performed to see if attendees are infectious with COVID-19. Furthermore, during winter months, when people often have symptoms of the common cold or flu, performing an antigen test will ascertain whether the condition is the coronavirus or not.
Antibody tests: When we get infected with COVID-19, our bodies make antibodies to fight the infection. The antibody test looks for the presence of these antibodies, which usually mean that we have been infected with COVID-19 in the past. This test uses a finger-prick blood test.
Read on if you want more science info…
PCR (polymerase chain reaction) test, is the most common form of testing in the UK and is seen as fairly reliable. A swab is taken from the back of the throat or the very top of the nostrils. Both are highly uncomfortable. The sample is sent to a laboratory to detect genetic material in the virus called RNA (the nucleic acid that converts DNA into proteins). RNA is collected as it carries the genetic information of coronavirus.
It is a time-consuming process involving a solution (aka reagent) which is added to the sample and then processed through various temperature steps in a thermal cycler so that it multiplies into larger quantities of DNA. Bioscientists can then see whether the SARS-CoV-2 virus (the virus that causes COVID-19) is present.
It takes around 12 hours which is why results take so long to be issued.
“LAMP” (loop-mediated isothermal amplification) tests uses a swab to collect material from the throat and nose but this is not processed in a thermal cycler. It produces many more viral RNA copies without the need to heat and cool – a constant temperature is used.
The samples are then placed in vials of reagents (substances that produce a chemical reaction to detect the RNA), then heated in a special machine for 20 minutes. The sample is analysed to confirm the presence or not of SARS-CoV-2 RNA.
What are the limitations to LAMP Testing ?
LAMP is less versatile than PCR, the most familiar nucleic acid amplification technique. LAMP is useful primarily as a diagnostic or detection technique, but is not useful for cloning or many other molecular biology applications enabled by PCR. Because LAMP uses 4 (or 6) primers targeting 6 (or 8) regions within a fairly small segment of the genome, and because primer design is subject to numerous constraints, it is difficult to design primer sets for LAMP “by eye”. (Wiki)
What is an Antibody test?
Antibody tests are used to detect antibodies to the COVID-19 virus to see if it’s likely that you have had the virus before.
The test works by taking a blood sample and testing for the presence of antibodies to see if you have developed an immune response to the virus.
Antibody tests differ to virus swab tests, which test to see if you currently have the virus. An antibody test cannot test if you currently have the virus.
There is no strong evidence yet to suggest that those who have had the virus develop long-lasting immunity that would prevent them from getting the virus again. (source GOV.UK)
What is a Lateral Flow test?
Lateral flow is an established technology, adapted to detect proteins (antigens) that are present when a person has COVID-19. The best-known example of a lateral flow test is the home pregnancy test kit.
The test kit is a hand-held device with an absorbent pad at one end and a reading window at the other. Inside the device is a strip of test paper that changes colour in the presence of COVID-19 proteins (antigens).
How to take the Test
Taking a lateral flow test usually involves taking a sample from the back of the throat near the tonsils and from the nose, using a swab.
The swab is dipped into an extraction solution. This is then dripped on to the device’s paper pad, producing the reaction that gives the result.
The result will be visible on the device precisely 30 minutes after the sample is applied. Unlike a PCR test, there is no need to send the sample to a lab.
What a Lateral Flow test cannot tell you.
if you’re immune to coronavirus
if you can or cannot spread the virus to other people
Whatever your antibody test result, you must continue to follow the same guidelines as everyone else to protect yourself and others from the virus.
How sensitive are the Lateral Flow & PCR tests?
PCR and lateral flow have different roles to play in controlling the virus, so it isn’t helpful to directly compare them in terms of how sensitive they are:
Lateral flow is useful for finding out if a person is infectious now, and able to transmit the virus to others. The level of sensitivity is high enough to detect the vast majority of these cases. Lateral flow testing is less likely to return a positive result outside the infectious window.
PCR is useful for confirming a suspected case of coronavirus, where the person is already self-isolating and is showing symptoms. Higher sensitivity of PCR means it can identify genetic material from COVID-19 even after the active infection has passed.
The different levels of sensitivity are therefore appropriate for the ways they are used.
How accurate are Covid tests?
Tests are never 100 per cent accurate, and vary in their “sensitivity” and “specificity”.
Sensitivity means the proportion of carriers of the viruswho are correctly identified;
specificity refers to the proportion of non-carrierswho are correctly identified.
So 100 per cent sensitivity would mean no false negatives, while 100 per cent specificity means no false positives.
What is the Test to Release scheme for International Travellers ?
From 15 December 2020, international arrivals are able to opt in to ‘Test to Release’.
Test to Release is a scheme to allow travellers to be released from quarantine early after taking a COVID test when they return from a UK Gov RED country (a country not on the travel Corridor list). The test should be booked before the traveller arrives home and can be carried out at one of the Collinson drive through test centres.
The first point of contact is Bill Brown, Head of Media Standards, who is responsible for ensuring delivered content meets ITV’s technical delivery standards. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 020 715 66542 or 07917 577 700.
Close Contact Cohorts and increased screening for COVID-19 – protocol for TV production
1. This document builds on the industry wide guidelines (TV Production Guidance Managing The Risk of Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Production Making) which outline a high-level framework for the effective assessment and management of Coronavirus (COVID-19) risk in TV production.
The guidance in this document specifically addresses an approach to support the resumption of production activity which unavoidably requires interaction within the current social distancing boundary. It sets out arrangements whereby pairs and/or small groups of people would be able to interact in much closer contact. This approach is only appropriate where all other mitigation measures are not feasible, and remains in addition, rather than a replacement for, the rigorous wider risk mitigation and hygiene measures that are set out in the broader guidance.
While this protocol currently applies to England and NI, and will apply in Scotland from 30 July, you should always consider whether there are local restrictions in place in your area or advice in place at the time, issued by the respective Governments, public health and health and safety authorities in the relevant jurisdiction in which the production is taking place. If so, you should first read the guidance relevant to your area as this may supersede guidance in this document.
This document considers how the establishment of close contact cohorts (CCCs) supported by increased screening for this group, through the establishment of routine of PCR testing (hereafter “PCR tests”), may be introduced as a key element of a risk mitigation plan. This protocol represents recommended minimum practice but other factors may dictate an enhanced level of provision. The CCC mirrors the concept of ‘fixed teams’ in the British Film Commission’s Working Safely During COVID-19 in Film and High-end TV Drama Production.
It is important to make clear this document provides guidance for how a CCC regime can be used as part of the wider risk assessments and safety measures that will need to be in place. It provides a framework for how to mitigate the risk where small numbers of people, a cohort, will need to breach the prevailing social distancing measures within the course of their work, through additional cohort screening. A cohort will be as small a number of people as possible who unavoidably need to be in close contact with each other. This can include both cast and crew, depending on the nature of the production.
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The screening regime proposed will decrease the likelihood that someone with the virus will be within the cohort. This testing would be on a regular basis (weekly) alongside other daily screening routine checks for symptoms etc. This approach offers a reasonable and sensible level of risk mitigation but it cannot eliminate risk.
This mitigation process is different from the concept of creating a COVID-free ‘bubble’ which this guidance does not specifically address. The bubble relies upon more stringent testing and quarantine to be applied prior to entering the, very controlled, bubble environment. The bubble approach would only be appropriate where the risk of COVID needs to be controlled to an exceptionally low level due to significant vulnerabilities of others within the bubble or other commercial reasons that could impact production delivery significantly.
This protocol outlines
○ Key principles
○ Testing provision
○ The process
o Prior to arrival on Production o During Production o Screening tests during production o Positive test results
○ Adopting the principles of socially distancing whilst working within close contact cohorts
8. The following key principles should be considered to establish if the CCC approach would be an appropriate risk mitigation.
a) This approach should only be considered when all other mitigations have been considered and discounted as appropriate for the situation including adapting editorial onscreen requirements.
b) Close contact periods must be restricted to the shortest time practicable.
c) Expert H&S and Medical advice will need to be sought before a CCC approach is implemented and the rationale must be set out in a detailed risk assessment.
d) Each CCC of individuals must be kept to the absolute minimum number of members possible. Members should, as far as possible on set, only mix with other members of the same cohort.
e) A number of CCCs may be established on a single production dependent upon the interaction requirements of cast overall.
f) Mixing or swapping between CCC should be kept to an absolute minimum. Someone can only be a member of one CCC at any one time and if someone wants to move from one CCC to another the full process for joining a CCC has to be adhered to.
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g) Consultation with those involved throughout the process of setting up these close contact cohorts is of paramount importance; individuals should clearly understand the situation and the effectiveness/limitations of the risk mitigations being introduced and where possible any requirements in relation to CCCs should be established at the casting stage. Productions should consider engaging with union representatives of those in the CCC to ensure that the implications of working in close contact cohorts are well understood.
h) CCC members should be easily identifiable as a member of a specific close contact cohort (e.g. colour coding groups).
i) All social distancing and other risk mitigations must be complied with by cohort members when not engaged in the specific interaction required for the production.
j) Any members of a proposed CCC or their household members (including if CCC members have caring responsibilities) who have COVID-19 vulnerabilities should be identified prior to production and appropriate adjustments made, with input from suitable experts if required to help further mitigate the risk to vulnerable groups.
k) Consideration should be given to the levels of social contact outside the production for members of a CCC and any limitations to this that may be considered appropriate, these should form part of the consultation with those involved. As a minimum members of CCCs should adhere to the wider government guidance that is in place at the time – particularly in relation to social distancing – but productions may want to review on a case by case basis and put bespoke measures in place if appropriate
l) Consideration should be given to how you quantify and record exposure of members of the CCC to each other – so accurate records of those who have worked in close proximity are readily available.
9. The appropriate testing for this purpose is a test for the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which causes COVID-19. These tests are commonly referred to as polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests. Swab samples taken from the nose and back of the throat or saliva samples are examined to look for the presence of genetic material from the virus. Samples (particularly swabs) should be collected by a trained operator; analysis is undertaken in an accredited laboratory. A positive test shows that the person being tested has a current, COVID-19 virus infection. The test can take from less than an hour to several days to get a result.
○ For accuracy and an effective result testing/ sampling should be completed by a trained operator in line with approved methodologies and sent to an accredited laboratory.
○ Suitable consent will need to be sought from the individual to undertake the test.
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○ Test results will need to be handled and managed in line with good medical practice and data privacy regulation
10.A flow chart that provides overview of the process is attached as appendix 1.
Prior to arrival on Production
11.Prior to arriving on set those who are part of a CCC group will undertake a PCR test.
12.The PCR testing should be undertaken so that the time between sampling and entering the CCC is as short as is practicable. With current testing provision that will generally mean approximately 48 hours before arriving on set but that may vary depending on testing availability and timings of test
results. The result of the test must be available before CCC entry and a positive result will preclude entry.
13.CCC members will be asked to adhere to social distancing requirements during the time between their test sample being taken and their arrival on set following their test result in line with the prevailing government guidance in place at the time.
14.CCC members should all confirm;
they and their household members are COVID symptom free
there is no reason why they should be isolating (e.g. recent closecontact with people positive with the virus or displaying symptoms)
15.If their pre-production test is positive CCC members will need to inform the relevant test and trace official body and self-isolate for at least 7 days from when symptoms started (if symptoms are displayed). Anyone who has a positive test but does not have symptoms must self-isolate for 14 days and follow any other up to date guidance from test and trace.
16.In line with all those working on the production all other risk mitigation measures should be followed, such as those applying to travel and accommodation. All standard daily screening measures should also be adhered to.
17.If a member of a CCC displays any of the symptoms of COVID-19 at any time during the production all members of the CCC will need to self-isolate and be tested.
18.The process for a positive test result should be followed as outlined in the section below.
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19.However if a cohort member displays symptoms and then tests negative, they should wait until they are symptom free before returning to production.
20.If cohort members who are symptom free (but are isolating having taken a test because another member of the cohort does have symptoms) test negative, they can return to production provided they do not develop symptoms.
Screening tests during production
21.A regular testing programme should be introduced for the duration of each CCC. This will increase the chances of identifying infected people who are either pre-symptomatic (before symptoms start) or asymptomatic (no symptoms) and therefore limit the risk of COVID-19 transmission to others in their CCC.
a) As standard this would be a minimum of weekly. Risk assessment of an individual or the production may indicate that more regular testing of the cohort is appropriate
b) The test would normally be undertaken at the production location but that is not necessary if testing can be done competently and more conveniently elsewhere.
c) As testing is part of the regular screening programme there would be no need for an individual to isolate in the time period between a routine test and receiving the results (as long as they remain COVID-19 symptom free during this period).
Positive test results 22.All members of that CCC must self-isolate for 10/14 days and be symptom free
before they can recommence activity on production, in line with government requirements.
23.Testing does not need to continue during a 10/14-day self-isolation period although all CCC members will be asked to undertake a new test before re- joining the CCC as if they were entering the CCC for the first time.
24.In the event of a positive test for a member of a CCC, appropriate health advice should normally be sought by the Production to investigate the precise circumstances and provide expert guidance.
25.Consideration should be given to circumstances where a CCC member tests positive, completes self-isolation and is symptom free but continues to test positive. Government guidance permits a return to work but people may continue to test positive for as much as 60 days after infection. Advice from an appropriate health professional/ virologist should be sought in such circumstances.
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Adopting the principles of socially distancing whilst working within CCCs
26.Whilst those within these groups are not being asked to isolate there is an expectation that they will, in good faith, maintain the key principles of social distancing throughout their daily life during the filming period;
○ stay at home as much as possible
○ limit contact with other people
○ maintain social distancing when outside the home
○ wash their hands regularly
○ make productions aware of any particular risk that their householdmembers are exposed to27.As a minimum CCC members will be required to adhere to the prevailing Government guidelines, but assessments can be made on a case by case basis to determine whether further measures may be appropriate.
ITV Covid Guidelines – Close Contact Cohorts and increased screening for COVID-19 – protocol for TV production 13/07/20
It sets out arrangements whereby pairs and/or small groups of people would be able to interact in much closer contact.
This approach is only appropriate where all other mitigation measures are not feasible, and remains in addition, rather than a replacement for, the rigorous wider risk mitigation and hygiene measures that are set out in the broader guidance.
Risk Mitigation – close contact cohorts (CCCs)
The establishment of close contact cohorts (CCCs) supported by increased screening for this group, through the establishment of routine of PCR testing (hereafter “PCR tests”), may be introduced as a key element of a risk mitigation plan.
Risk Mitigation – weekly testing
The screening regime proposed will decrease the likelihood that someone with the virus will be within the cohort.
This testing would be on a regular basis (weekly) alongside other daily screening routine checks for symptoms etc.
This approach offers a reasonable and sensible level of risk mitigation but it cannot eliminate risk.
These tests are commonly referred to as polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests – Suitable consent will need to be sought from the individual to undertake the test.
With current testing provision that will generally mean approximately 48 hours pre-entering set
Risk Mitigation – Social Distancing
CCC members will be asked to adhere to social distancing requirements during the time between their test sample being taken and their arrival on set following their test result in line with the prevailing government guidance in place at the time.
Note; The CCC mirrors the concept of ‘fixed teams’ in the British Film Commission’s Working Safely During COVID-19 in Film and High- end TV Drama Production.
A cohort will be as small a number of people as possible who unavoidably need to be in close contact with each other.