Medico-Legal Death Investigation

The Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine’s ‘Medico-Legal Death Investigation’ service involves a team of consultant medical specialists and forensic scientists who assist with death investigations in Victoria and provide expert opinions in the fields of forensic pathology, clinical forensic medicine and forensic science both nationally and internationally. Our staff regularly provide specialist medical and scientific information and expert opinions to a range of agencies and individuals as well as government and non-government organisations including:

  • the Coroner’s Court of Victoria,
  • the Magistrates Court of Victoria
  • the County Court of Victoria
  • the Supreme Court of Victoria
  • Interstate Courts
  • the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunals
  • the Australia Administrative Tribunals
  • the loved ones and families of deceased persons,
  • the Victoria Police,
  • Victim support agencies
  • the Office of Public Prosecutions,
  • Health Care Regulatory agencies,
  • the Department of Health,
  • hospitals and health care services
  • Consultative Councils,
  • State and Commonwealth advisory committees
  • legal and medical practitioners
  • private and public organisations.

Forensic Pathology

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Forensic pathologists are health specialists who assists coroners, police and courts to resolve critical medical issues, including causes of death and how injuries might have occurred.

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Crime Scene Pathology

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The forensic pathologist’s work often involves crime scene investigation. This includes the analysis of information relating to the deceased person prior to death, together with examination and analysis of the scene and environment in which the person died or was found dead.

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Forensic Radiology

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VIDEO: Dr Chris O’Donnell, CT Scans and Forensic Radiology at VIFM. In 2005 a computed tomography (CT) scanner was installed into the mortuary of the Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine. This was one of the first mortuary-based CT scanners in the world and since that time, all deceased persons admitted to the Institute have been […]

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Human Identification Services

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The Human Identification Services (HIS) is a specialist group of pathologists, clinicians, radiologists, odontologists, (dentists) anthropologists and molecular biologists who work together in the identification of the living and the dead.

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Disaster Victim Identification

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The VIFM has a world class Disaster Victim Identification department. Many of its forensic experts have worked tirelessly in areas of international disaster and distress such as the former Yugoslavia, Iraq, Burma, East Timor, the West Bank, the Asian tsunami and closer to home, the Victorian bushfires of 2009.

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The Role of the Coroner

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In conjunction with the forensic pathologist the coroner is a watchdog who maintains a constant surveillance on potentially fatal hazards in our society and ensures that preventable deaths are recognised and the issues surrounding them addressed.

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What happens when a body is admitted to the VIFM Mortuary

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It is only deaths which are reported to the coroner that are admitted to the VIFM Mortuary.

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A Day in the Life of a Forensic Pathologist

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In this video, Associate Professor David Ranson talks about the role of a Forensic Pathologist. A day in the Life of a Forensic Pathologist by Clinical Associate Professor David Ranson It had been an average week.  It had been an average weekend.  Babies had been born.  No doubt there had been work, rest and play.  […]

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