Contributors Fitness to Participate

Date: 04.05.2015     Last updated: 03.11.2017 at 15.09
A guide to the health of contributors who are asked to perform physically demanding tasks, over and above those that they would normally encounter in their day to day life.

We define ‘contributor’ as anyone who makes a contribution to our content, whether paid or not, whether on screen or not, but who isn’t either an employee of the BBC, a freelancer (talent or sole trader) or a contractor to the BBC.

What Can Go Wrong?

  • You must consider any health risks carefully in your risk assessment and take steps to be satisfied that a contributor’s state of health or fitness is consistent with the tasks they are likely to undertake.
  • Contributors who are being asked to perform activities that they are not accustomed to could be harmed.

Legal/BBC Requirements

  • There are no specific legal requirements to draw to your attention; you must still apply the control measures that are relevant to your activity.

Control Measures

General Controls

  • Carry out your risk assessment in the normal way considering the physical tasks (if any) that your contributors will be asked to undertake and record those on your risk assessment.
  • Establish what controls are required to protect the health and wellbeing of all involved including the level of first aid cover required in the event of an accident or incident.
  • Use the Task Based Matrix (below) to decide what level of health clearance is required.
  • Use the suggested method of declaration and make sure contributors understand the tasks, the risks; and that they sign the form.
  • File and store the form and programme information for 6 years.
  • If a Doctor declaration is required this will take longer to obtain – again you should check that the Doctor has signed the form when you have received it and then file as above.
  • The Doctor, in this circumstance, must be their own normal medical attendant (GP); or in some cases their specialist who will have access and knowledge of their current and past health.
  • Always be aware of contributor’s day to day medical requirements or disabilities and ask what help they need.

Task Based Matrix

Division Specific Issues

  • No division specific issues

FAQs/Did You Know?

  • In the majority of cases contributors are not being asked to perform tasks that are any more onerous than they might encounter in normal day to day life, and in these circumstances there should be nothing further required in terms of fitness or medical checks except making individuals aware of the tasks that they will be asked to undertake and asking whether they have any special requirements such as during an emergency evacuation.
  • Be aware that no medical or fitness check is 100% reliable in predicting whether health problems could occur. 
  • The Forms and further guidance are available on the right hand panel.

Forms and further guidance documents

The Forms and further guidance documents referred to above are available on the right hand panel. They are:

  • Guidelines to Producers. The guidelines apply to contributors only. This document includes all the forms you'll need, as outlined below and the Task Based Matrix.
  • Information for Contributors (level 1). The BBC programme in which you are participating is likely to require a low level of physical activity.
  • Contributors Self-Declaration of Fitness (level 2). This declaration should be completed by contributors to a programme who are due to undertake physical tasks which require a level of fitness above that of their normal day to day activities.
  • Contributors Task Based Assessment (level 3). This declaration is only for contributors to a programme who are fully accustomed to undertaking the activities proposed in the production, along the lines described on the form.

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This site describes what the BBC does in relation to managing its health, safety and security risks and is intended for those who work directly for the BBC.

It is not intended to provide instruction or guidance on how third parties should manage their risks. The BBC cannot be held liable for how this information is interpreted or used by third parties, nor provide any assurance that adopting it would provide any measure of legal compliance. More information.

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