The Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine
Media & Events
VIFM PREPAREDNESS FOR COVID-19
26th March, 2020
Despite unprecedented challenges in this time of adversity and uncertainty, the Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine is well prepared to meet any eventuation with regard to COVID-19, according to VIFM Director, Professor Noel Woodford.
“Clearly these are extraordinary and challenging times,” he said. “We are working very closely with the relevant agencies and government departments to support the people and communities of Victoria at this time of real hardship, uncertainty and loss.”
“We have a well-developed plan which will enable us to increase our capacity to cope with the pandemic and its tragic consequences,” Professor Woodford said.
The Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine is responsible for managing a range of deaths in Victoria.
While its core business is investigating deaths reported to the Coroner it also has state-wide responsibility to support and coordinate the management and storage of deceased persons who have died in other circumstances, including those associated with epidemics and pandemics.
The VIFM, as an independent statutory authority supports the Department of Justice and Community Safety, the Health Department, and Emergency Management Victoria by coordinating the State Fatality Management Plan. This plan is implemented in circumstances when large numbers of fatalities occur.
The VIFM has a team of specialist medical practitioners, nurses, mortuary, scientific and technical staff ready to be deployed as required.
These experts have provided assistance around the world in response to mass fatality events including MH17 and natural disease outbreaks such as Ebola in Africa. They use personal protective equipment to manage bodies in the context of disease outbreaks and in hazardous environments including those related to infectious outbreaks.
“The Institute is adapting its operations to keep our staff, visitors, and their loved ones safe, while striving to continue to provide the essential forensic pathology, clinical, scientific and tissue-related services relied upon by the community” Professor Woodford said.
Further information: Deb Withers firstname.lastname@example.org 0417 398 448