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Casualty first look sees hospital staff in PPE as they battle COVID-19

Casualty set to return to screens in January as first look picture sees hospital staff kitted out in full PPE as they battle the devastating impact of COVID-19

Casualty is set to return to screens on BBC One with a realistic Covid-19 episode in the new year, the broadcaster has confirmed.

The long-running BBC show will return on January 2 for the most powerful episode in its 35-year history, detailing the Covid-19 crisis and its devastating impact on hospitals.

A first look at the episode sees Holby City Hospital staff kitted out in PPE, including face shields and blue overalls, as they prepare to tackle the coronavirus pandemic.

It’s back: Casualty is set to return to screens on January 2 with a Covid-19 episode (L-R: Actors William Beck, Jason Durr, George Rainsford, Charles Venn, Amanda Mealing, Derek Thompson, and Amanda Henderson)

The BBC said the poignant episode will see the team cope with ‘the toughest challenge of their careers’ as coronavirus reaches the emergency department.

Characters battling Covid-19 on the frontline include Dr Dylan Keogh (William Beck), David Hide (Jason Durr), Robyn Miller (Amanda Henderson) and Ethan Hardy (George Rainsford).

And clinical Lead Connie Beauchamp (Amanda Mealing) will find herself faced with the biggest test of her career after team members are stricken with the virus.

Connie is also set to confront a difficult personal challenge after her lover Jacob, played by Charles Venn, also tests positive for Covid-19.

Returning: The upcoming episode will detail the Covid-19 crisis and its devastating impact on hospitals (above, George Rainsford and Neet Mohan on the socially distanced set)

Returning: The upcoming episode will detail the Covid-19 crisis and its devastating impact on hospitals (above, George Rainsford and Neet Mohan on the socially distanced set)

Fortunately, she will have the unwavering support of Casualty staple Charlie Fairhead, the show’s longest serving character, played by Derek Thompson. 

But Charlie will become increasingly concerned about the impact of Covid-19 on care homes and their vulnerable elderly residents, forcing him to make a gut-wrenching decision.

Meanwhile, Fenisha Khatri (Olivia D’Lima) will desperately do everything she can to try and care for her unborn baby amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.  

The health crisis also prompts paramedic Lev (Uriel Emil) to move out of the family home during lockdown to protect his young son, who is recovering from cancer.

Covid-19: The BBC said the upcoming episode will see the team cope with 'the toughest challenge of their careers' as coronavirus reaches the emergency department

Covid-19: The BBC said the upcoming episode will see the team cope with ‘the toughest challenge of their careers’ as coronavirus reaches the emergency department 

The decision adds a new complication to Lev’s fraught 16-year marriage, with wife Faith, played by Kirsty Mitchell, who is still coming to terms with claims that her husband has had an illicit affair.

Reflecting on the returning show in September, Kate Oates, Head of Continuing Drama at BBC Studios, said: ‘We are thrilled to be back in production with BBC’s longest running medical show.

‘The writers, Casualty teams, cast and crew are back on set with stories that reflect the extraordinary times we are living through. 

‘We can’t wait for the audience to see them and to be back in the Saturday night schedule.’

Two metre rule: The Casualty production team ensured that the series was produced safely and responsibly, adhering to social distancing to keep with government guidelines

Two metre rule: The Casualty production team ensured that the series was produced safely and responsibly, adhering to social distancing to keep with government guidelines

Casualty halted production in March amid the first national lockdown but resumed filming in September with Covid-19 safety protocols in place. 

The Casualty production team ensured that the series was produced safely and responsibly, adhering to social distancing to keep with government guidelines.

It was previously revealed that the series will return to screens at the slightly shorter duration of 40 minutes.

Casualty returns to BBC One on January 2 at 7.35pm.

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