It was a great privilege to contribute to the creative process in making this special episode of BBC's Casualty for the 75th anniversary of the NHS. With a series of interviews with healthcare workers, this episode aims to highlight the importance of the NHS with its dedicated staff members working tirelessly and often in challenging circumstances to help keep the nation healthy and safe.Pankaj Chandak
17 July 2023
Casualty: 75th anniversary of the NHS special – King's researcher on BBC One
Pankaj Chandak, a transplant surgery trainee and post-doctoral research fellow from King’s featured in the special episode alongside medical professionals from across the NHS.
Casualty, the world’s longest running Medical Drama, aired a special episode to mark the 75th anniversary of the NHS on BBC One. The episode highlighted the extraordinary teamwork and collaboration that goes on across the medical services every day to save lives.
The episode focuses on the story of Amartya, a motorbike rider who has been involved in a devastating collision with life threatening injuries, and showcases the extraordinary efforts made across the length and breadth of the emergency medical services to save him, from ambulance call handlers, to nurses, paramedics, doctors, HEMS teams, surgeons, and beyond.
The special episode also featured commentary from real-life medical professionals including Mr Pankaj Chandak, transplant surgery trainee and Research Fellow from the School of Immunology and Microbial Sciences in the Faculty of Life Sciences & Medicine.
In the episode Pankaj features during the surgery which takes place in the episode, providing an insight into his experience of working within the health services and summarising what being a part of the NHS and the work by all who are involved means to him.
Pankaj has featured on the BBC before with Harmonies of Hope, a choir he founded that is made up of children who have received a kidney transplant and their siblings. Funded by BBC Children in Need, Pankaj and his team set up the choir in the hope that this will give young patients something to celebrate when they get together and sing. He is also Medical Advisor to the Netflix series The Crown and along with transplant team members, appeared in film as a surgeon who operated on King George VI in Season 1.
The special standalone episode aired on Saturday 15 July on BBC One and is available to watch through BBC iPlayer.
To mark the 75th anniversary we wanted to shine a light on the awe-inspiring work of the doctors, nurses and paramedics who work in the NHS. The episode tells a powerful story that dramatises the skill and immense team-work that goes into helping one patient, Amartya, as he fights for his life. In this one-off episode the audience gains a truly authentic glimpse behind the curtain to understand what it feels like to stand in the shoes of NHS professionals.Jon Sen, Executive Producer of Casualty for BBC Studios