Appendix 5-E. Technical Guidance for AHRQ Video Products

AHRQ Publishing and Communications Guidelines

Videos produced on behalf of AHRQ should be delivered with the original (or uncompressed) file format that can serve as the Agency's master from which all other formats will be created, converted, or compressed. Before producing a video for AHRQ, please provide the following information in an Email to

  • A brief description of the project.
  • AHRQ lead or program liaison.
  • Timeline for project.
  • Intended production acquisition and resolution format (the type of camera/format that describes the quality of the image being acquired).
  • Intended method of distribution (Web, YouTube, hospital patient channels, broadcast, etc.).

Acceptable Video Formats

Some examples of acceptable formats and their specifications appear below. Exports and master files are the final deliverable files that will be used to show video across multiple distribution channels. A high quality master output should be in the original project resolution (SD, 1280×720 HD, 1920×1080 HD, 2K, 4K); and acceptable high quality file formats (MOV, MP4, AVI, etc.) include:

  • DVCPRO50 (SD only).
  • ProRes 422, ProRes 422 HQ, ProRes 4444.
  • Avid DNxHD.
  • Animation Codec.
  • Uncompressed.
  • These should be delivered in either a Quicktime (.mov) or .avi container.

All compressed outputs must include mobile, Web, and DVD versions:

  • Mobile and Web formats must be encoded with the H264 codec, preferably in a Quicktime container (MP4 also is acceptable).
  • WMV and Flash files must be encoded to the specific projects requirements.
  • DVD outputs must include all media needed to burn additional DVDs, for example:
    • MPEG and AC3 files for SD DVDs.
    • H264 and AC3 files for Blu-rays.

Note: Uncompressed video shot in Standard Definition (SD) is acceptable if that is the only option available. However, every attempt should be made to create new video in a higher definition format.

Uncompressed files will be large and likely require delivery on a thumb drive, external hard drive, or through download from a passcode-protected URL link to a private FTP site.


Under Section 508* all videos and video recordings made with government funding must include captions before they can be posted, shared, or displayed for public viewing. Therefore, AHRQ requires that all videos submitted as Agency masters be delivered with transcripts but without captions embedded.

Please submit videos with a separate time coded transcript file that the Agency will use to embed or create a caption file to synchronize with the audio track of the video.

Any questions about any of the AHRQ's technical requirements for video deliverables should be sent to:

* Here is more information about Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended in 1998:

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Page last reviewed August 2014
Internet Citation: Appendix 5-E. Technical Guidance for AHRQ Video Products: AHRQ Publishing and Communications Guidelines. August 2014. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD.