Filming in the hospital setting

Invasion Of The Body Snatchers

We are an administrator’s nightmare: stalking the hallways, abducting doctors, and generally wreaking havoc throughout your facility. Are we alien invaders? Horrible monsters? No – just the agency crew and film makers who have taken over your hospital in the name of advertising!


Filming television commercials or web video in a controlled environment is challenging. Filming in a healthcare facility presents unique challenges for the crew and hospital staff alike. Careful pre-planning and a flexible mindset are critical to organizing a successful shoot with minimal impact on hospital operations.

Here are some tips for a hospital-friendly shoot:

  • When filming doctors and staff, plan around THEIR schedule. Crew and agency staff must be prompt and ready to film, even if they end up waiting for the doctor who’s delayed in surgery.
  • Keep film equipment well organized and out of the main traffic pattern. Utilize “wet floor” signage to direct foot traffic away from standing equipment.
  • Get to know the facility engineer. Eliminating unwanted sound or light may require turning off circulation fans, vending machines, etc.
  • Choose locations wisely. Filming in a labor/delivery area may get you more sound than you bargained for!
  • Adjust the set as needed (move a bench or light, for example), but always return equipment to the original location.
  • Above all, respect the staff, patients and visitors in the environment.

A successful shoot depends on cooperation from everyone, and an organized invasion will always be more successful than shooting from the hip. So forgive the bright lights, stay flexible, and don’t forget to smile.