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Just Science Podcast: Just Lending a Hand During Autopsy Exams

NCJ Number
Date Published
March 2023

This podcast episode discusses the importance of forensic autopsy technicians, who assist forensic pathologists, noting their many roles and required education.


This second episode of Just Science Podcast’s Supporting Medicolegal Death Investigators mini season, where the host, Kelly Keyes, interviews Lindsey McNaughton, the founder of the National Association of Forensic Autopsy Technicians. The two discuss the various responsibilities of forensic autopsy technicians, including photographing human remains, prepping tools, specimen processing, cleaning, performing advanced fingerprinting techniques, or performing eviscerations; McNaughton notes that technicians’ roles will vary based on the location, and some may be more or less involved in the postmortem examination. McNaughton also describes a typical day at her office, treatment of organs, and modifications of autopsy procedures, and fingerprinting tactics for decomposed or damaged fingers. The podcasters then discuss educational backgrounds and experiences that would be helpful to somebody interested in becoming a technician. McNaughton also describes the difference between the role of a pathologist assistant and a forensic autopsy technician before recounting her career path and why she created the National Association of Forensic Autopsy Technicians.

Date Published: March 1, 2023