Video Production: Creative Services

COVID-19 Photography/Videography Guidelines:

For the safety and protection of our patients and staff, our highest priority is to ensure that our photos and videos depict proper use of face coverings and physical distancing. If being photographed or filmed in our production studio, please note that a single individual is permitted without a face covering ONLY if it is for a single headshot/portrait or a single talking head on camera. Please refer to University of Florida guidelines for more information on photography and videography guidelines outside of our production studio. Group photos/footage are permissible, but must adhere to the aforementioned UF policy. Please remain masked, and ensure that your photo session does not exceed 15 minutes. Following these guidelines will model best practices. We appreciate your cooperation and understanding. We stand with other academic institutions that are following these best practices.  

NOTE: Please plan to wear your own UF Health labcoat for photo/video shoots. In the event you don’t have one, we do have loaners, but we cannot guarantee that one will be available for you during your shoot, given that we are getting them cleaned regularly because of potential Covid-19 contamination.

We understand that some images/footage you have and/or that are in our photo galleries were taken prior to these guidelines. If you need to use an image/footage where subjects are not adhering to the guidelines, please add this disclaimer/caption: “This image/footage was taken prior to national guidelines of face coverings and physical distancing.”

The UF Health Creative Services video production team produces videos for the Internet, internal communications and broadcast TV. Videos we shoot and produce help create awareness, enhance our brand reputation, educate patients and consumers, and sell services. Ideally, the projects we take on will appeal to a broad, external audience.


  • Single- and two-camera shoots
  • Video editing
  • Voiceovers
  • Professional lighting
  • 3D animation and motion graphics

What Can Creative Services Do For You?

The first step is to discuss your goals and the audience you are trying to reach. Once we have a feel for who you are and what you want do, we can begin looking for ways to communicate that message visually.

Video production, even at its most basic level, is fairly complex. Sure, anybody these days can use their smart phone to record and produce video, and in some cases that suffices. But typically, the videos we produce for our organization require a bit more planning and polish. It always scares us when somebody comes to us and says, “Can you throw together a quick video for me?” The answer, 99% of the time, is no. There’s often no such thing as a “quick video project.” Video production takes planning, patience and resources. Here are some things you must consider when requesting video services:

  1. Who is/are your audience(s)?
  2. What key messages are your trying to convey?
  3. What format or distribution channel will you use to deliver your video? The Web? YouTube? A .MOV or other file you’ll play from your computer? If so, are you sure your computer has a video player that can play .MOV files and other common video file types?
  4. What video style will best convey your message(s)? Documentary? Interview? Other?
  5. Who will handle script writing? Will voiceover narration be needed?
  6. Who will handle the booking of rooms/spaces? The hiring or gathering of staff or actors? Ensuring that security personnel and facilities personnel are alerted? Ensuring that the production crew is properly escorted? Ensuring that appropriate patient and staff consents are obtained? Logistics are often the most difficult and time-consuming part of a video project and we really need your help here.
  7. Who will route the scripts and final product for review and approval? This can take a few days or even weeks depending on how many approvals are needed.
  8. Can we produce your video internally, or will its complexity require the hiring of a production crew? If so, do you have an adequate budget to hire a crew? Most people do not grasp what it takes to produce high-quality video. It takes a crew, lighting, fancy equipment like dollies and booms, and time. Most people want the polish without making the proper investment. Polish and professional quality requires an investment of time, resources and, if we can’t produce it internally, money. Will we or a crew have to travel to multiple locations to gather video footage?
  9. Have you allotted appropriate production time for your video? Most people make the mistake of thinking that the length of a video determines the time it will take to film and produce. However, we imagine you’ve seen some pretty in-depth 30-second ads on TV, which could have taken months to film and produce. Length of video does not always determine length of production time. Video production is like an iceberg. The shooting is often the easiest and quickest part; like the top of the iceberg. The majority of the iceberg is underwater; its bulk is not visible. The part of video production that is “underwater” is called pre- and post-production; the days/weeks/months of planning and managing the logistics, then the time it takes to edit your video to tell the story, amplified by effects, music, etc. There is no easy way to tell you how long your video will take to produce without discussing all the questions above.
  10. Is catering during your shoot(s) necessary? Snacks and drinks go a long way to keeping your crew and actors/subjects happy and energized during a shoot.
  11. We typically rely on the department or person requesting the video to serve as a quasi-producer, meaning we rely on you to assist with identifying locations, reserving them, generating scripts and procuring your subjects (MDs, staff, etc.). Of course, we’re here to guide and counsel you on the logistics, but we need you to help in the heavy lifting. In other words, you can’t simply “hand-off” a video project to us, dust your hands and wait for the final version. We’ll need you involved in the process.

At any given time, our video production staff have multiple projects in the queue. We know and understand that your video project is a high priority, but we are often juggling multiple high priorities. In cases where we simply cannot accommodate your request internally, we can recommend local video production companies who may be able to help. Their fees are reasonable and they do quality work.

NOTE: faculty appearing in videos produced on behalf of UF Health should wear a UF Health labcoat in the video. This helps promote the UF Health brand.

We need to keep our video production services focused on marketing, PR, and news-related pieces that appeal mostly to a broad, external audience.

Projects that we typically do not or cannot take on include:

  • Taping classes, lectures, surgical procedures and/or clinical training, meetings or grand rounds so that your staff or others can view them later. University of Florida Video and Collaboration Services and/or the UF Center for Instructional Technology & Training can assist here.
  • Live video streaming from an event. This requires special gear and technology. Again, University of Florida Video and Collaboration Services can assist here.
  • Editing your personal video.
  • Staff/student/patient/applicant training, education or information. Though we have done these on rare occasions if our workload permitted (and COVID-19 has dictated some of what we film/don’t film), we are no longer in a position to manage these types of projects.
  • Producing videos in support of journal articles and grant proposals. UF Health’s Lifelong Learning project can assist you with this.
  • Virtual tours and faculty/student/staff recruitment videos that are not directly related to patient care. We have done some of these in the past due to COVID-19 and when we’ve had capacity, but our workload no longer allows us to produce these. The links above to other campus video service providers may help, or you’ll need to consider outsourcing.

UF Health Lab Coats

All medical and clinical care providers must wear their UF Health lab coat (with the UF Health logo) when photographed or filmed. This standard was introduced several years ago as part of the UF Health rebranding initiative. The reasons are:

  • Along with a uniform background for our professional headshots, we want all providers to be easily and consistently identified as UF Health providers
  • A lab coat is a universal symbol of a doctor in our society, generally recognizable by most lay public
  • A consistent approach also lends an air of professionalism across our communications

For headshots and other shoots, we have some “loaner” UF Health lab coats available, but ask that you please provide your own if possible. This will guarantee the best fit. Please be sure your lab coat is clean and pressed for your shoot. Note:

  • Providers associated with the UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital do not typically wear lab coats when interacting with patients. Thus, environmental and video b-roll shots do not need to include providers in lab coats. However, professional headshots/portraits do need to include lab coats.
  • New providers in locations that are outside Gainesville often have their portraits taken with a local photographer. UF Health lab coats are required in these photos.

Closed Captioning Requirements

The Americans with Disabilities Act , enacted in 1990, limits discriminatory practices towards individuals with disabilities. The act covers specific requirements for websites and digital properties to be in compliance with the law. Organizations not within the law run the risk of lawsuits. UF Health is obligated to meet these requirements under Title II and Title III, which cover public entities and public accommodations, accordingly. Changes in Web Accessibility Standards and FCC guidelines on captioning in relation to the ADA necessitate the need to make captioning our online videos a requirement going forward.

Captioning Process

Captioning technologies, particularly automated processes, are improving rapidly, so tactics in captioning are subject to change often. For the moment, this process represents our best practices for captioning as of May 2017. The person requesting the video is ultimately responsible for its captioning.

YouTube Captioning

  • Once a video produced by Creative Services, Web Services, or other entity has been approved and uploaded to the UF Health YouTube channel, captions can be added using YouTube’s captioning tool.
    • Go to the video editor, select close captioning, and select the option for YouTube to automatically create captions.
    • These captions will usually by 70-80% correct. The auto-generated captioning can be edited and modified and saved to be used in place of the original.
    • Download the edited captions as an .SRT file. Name the file: ‘VIDEO CAPTION – [INSERT NAME OF VIDEO] – [INSERT DATE AS XX.XX.XXXX]. It’s best to store your caption file in WorkFront where you have logged your video project, or on a staff-accessible server in the event we need to access it for future use.

Facebook Prerecorded Videos

  • While Facebook does have a tool for editing captions, it’s much rougher and difficult to use than the YouTube version. It’s better to edit in YouTube and then use the .SRT file to upload with the video on Facebook.
  • Facebook’s Video Library will allow page editors to upload videos, add an .SRT file, and save the video, unpublished, to be used in future posts (or you can schedule posts directly from the library).
  • Facebook requires a specific format for naming of .SRT files – this should be part of our naming convention (see above).

Facebook Live Videos

  • While we cannot do live captioning for these videos, FCC rules on videos require captioning be provided for live events within 12 hours of an event. Our social goal will be to do this captioning immediately after as event. This process will be done as follows:
    • Save a copy of the video from Facebook to computer
    • Upload to YouTube as a private video
    • Caption and download the .SRT file
    • Upload the. SRT file to the original Facebook Live video in our Facebook video library

Instagram / Twitter

  • Neither Instagram nor Twitter provide robust captioning tools. On Twitter, we’ve limited video shares to links to YouTube content instead.

Request Our Services

Please contact UF Health Communications and speak with a marketing representative who can triage your project to the appropriate creative services team member and shepherd it through the review and approval process.