Seven physicians who are specially trained in the field of forensic pathology staff the pathology unit. Their main duty is performing autopsies to determine both the cause and the manner of death in each and every case that comes under the jurisdiction of the Medical Examiner. This requires collaboration with many other units, including the investigative unit and toxicology lab, as well as police detectives, homicide detectives, the Fire Marshall, etc.
Due to the complex nature of their work, the determination of cause and manner of death may take weeks to months to complete. Pathologists also provide expert testimony in court proceedings. The doctors who work in the pathology unit provide a vital public service to the citizens of Philadelphia.
Did you know…our doctors examine about 2,500 decedents each year.