We were commissioned to make a suite of films to help parents spot the signs of sepsis on behalf of NHS England and Health Innovation Network South London. Our brief was to clearly illustrate key symptoms of the disease with appropriate advice and actions for parents, in a bid to both save lives and reduce pressure on A&E and GPs.
In order to understand what parents needed to see and hear, we spent time consulting with clinical experts and patient groups, who had experience with sepsis. It was agreed that in order to have the most impact, the film needed to highlight the symptoms of the disease in real children, so we worked with our project board and A&E departments to allow us access to appropriate patients. From this consultation, we developed a clear script that carefully led parents through what to look for and how to react. Alongside this we developed a film about how to care for children with a fever at home.
We spent a week filming in A&E to capture symptoms that children suffering from sepsis might exhibit. We worked sensitively, so the parents that we approached felt comfortable with the filming and managed the consent process for our client. TV Doctor, Dr Ranj Singh, presented the film to appeal to the target audience. In post production we created on screen graphics to add clarity and provide clear actions for parents. A longer version incorporating this and the “at home” film is now being used in A&E departments, at the point children are discharged.
In the three weeks after its launch, the main sepsis film was viewed 1.1 million times and shared 20,000 times on NHS Choices Facebook page. It has now been subtitled and translated into 15 languages so it can reach as many parents as possible. Our client told us the extent of this reach demonstrated real value for money and the project board is delighted with the impact the film is already having.