In its May 19, 2016 Recommendation to the Attorney General, the National Commission on Forensic Science recognized a shortage of board certified forensic pathologists and a backlog of cases in most medical examiner and coroner offices. These problems affect the quality, completeness and timeliness of death investigations, which can have a negative impact on families who lost their loved ones and on criminal justice proceedings. The Commonwealth of Virginia is impacted by this shortage and, through its Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (OCME), proposes to address this through an application for funding to identify and intensively train one forensic pathology fellow. Forensic pathologists conduct death investigations in order to understand cause and manner of death, as well as the circumstance surrounding deaths.
This project will meet two goals. First, it will increase the number of qualified forensic pathologists in Virginia and the United States by mentoring and training one forensic pathology fellow to meet board certifiable standards. Second, it will build professional and technical skills for the forensic pathology fellow through multiple training and education opportunities.