COVID RA Guidance

UK Broadcast Covid Information 

Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Risk Assessment Guidance – Basic requirements

1. Specifically consider people at higher risk of harm 

is anyone ‘clinically vulnerable’? – Do they require a personalised risk assessment ?

2. Heighten precautions for everyone at work

Good practice is to : ‘Wash your hands more frequently and at least for 20 seconds each time. Use soap and water or a hand sanitiser when you: get home or into work, blow your nose, sneeze or cough, eat or handle food’.

A raised temperature is one of the most common signs of developing COVID-19. If you choose to introduce temperature checks.appropriate protocols will need to be developed and due consideration given to any potential data privacy issues.

Check contact details and emergency details are up to date

Ensure production team are up to date on training, and that this is detailed through the RA process

If someone displays symptoms, they should self isolate, or return home from work. They should order a home test. 

https://www.nhs.uk/ask-for-a-coronavirus-test. If they don’t have access to the internet, a test can be ordered by calling 119 (in England, Wales and Northern Ireland) or 0300 303 2713 (in Scotland).

What is close contact ?

Close contact is defined in guidance, accurate at the time of this update guidance, as;

● having face-to-face contact with someone (less than 1 metre away)

● spending more than 15 minutes within 2 metres of someone

● travelling in a car or other small vehicle with someone (even on a short journey) or close to them on a plane

Additional requirements in the event of multiple outbreaks in the workplace

If you have more than one case of COVID-19 in the workplace, you should contact your local health protection team to report the suspected outbreak (find your local team through – https://www.gov.uk/health-protection-team).

3. Reduce the number of people involved

This is a key control to managing the risk and should be considered before a more detailed risk assessment, key considerations should be;

● Minimise workers needed on site to complete the work activity.

● Maximise technology to enable roles and activities to be done from home and remotely wherever possible.

● Segregate people within the working area to minimise close contact and maintain

social distancing as far as possible.

4. Consider editorial ‘on camera’ requirements 

A key risk to consider is how the creative and editorial requirements of the production are met and agreed with Commissioning Networks within the parameters of the current restrictions. Key considerations should be;

Changes to script and scenes to take into account social distancing.

● Changes to set to take into account social distancing.

● Use of ‘green screens’ to ‘down the line’ to support minimising numbers on production.

● Scripts should be provided as early as possible to support with planning.

● Directors and other relevant roles may need to be brought on earlier in the planning and prep for production to establish what is required to deliver the production within the restrictions of managing the COVID-19 risk.

5. Consider mental health and wellbeing

Those having to work from home may experience social isolation while those having to come to a studio or location may be fearful of the risk of becoming infected. It is therefore essential that overall wellbeing and mental health are considered within the risk assessment for production and that those responsible understand the wellbeing needs and requirements of their teams.

The Film and TV Charity is committed to supporting the film and TV workforce in returning to production after COVID-19 and provides many useful resources for production along with support routes for the workforce.

6. Feedback loop

It is important to ensure there that production teams are reporting any shortfalls (and successes/learnings) to ensure the risk assessment process is effective and actively reviewed.

On a production basis it is important to have a clear procedure for raising concerns, you should also consider if an explicit commitment that no one will be sanctioned for refusing to work in an unsafe environment would support people in raising concerns.

Credit : BBC. ITV, Production Guild

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