This is administrative forensic services work, directing through subordinate technical supervisors and administrators, the analytical, investigative, operations, and administrative services of the forensic services section of the Medical Examinerís Office. The employee in this class develops and implements plans and strategies for directing city-wide investigation of the cause and manner of sudden or unusual deaths, the processing and dissecting of bodies for postmortem examination and forensic evidence, and administrative services under the jurisdiction of the Medical Examiner. Work includes overseeing contracted forensic services, and managing the divisionís budget. Establishing and maintaining relationships with other agencies and the general public, and directing research and developing agenda for discussion about medical/legal risks, Safety Board regulations and infection control committee activities are significant aspects of the work. Work is performed under the direction of the Medical Examiner.

ALLOCATING FACTORS: (The following conditions must be met for a position to be allocated to this class.)


Directs, through subordinate supervisors, forensic operations services of the Medical Examinerís Office, including death investigation, the processing and dissecting of bodies, morgue operations, records, maintenance of autopsy case files, medical dictation and translation, release of personal effects of victims to next-of-kin, and security of forensic facilities; evaluates work for quality and productivity; develops and implements initiatives to improve and to modify existing processes; directs the development and implementation of safety standards and operation procedures; ensures continuous updating of new techniques in the field; determines appropriate solutions for operational and administrative problems in such areas as personal effects, evidence collection and storage, and interdepartmental and interagency cooperation; provides technical direction to subordinates in complex or difficult situations; reviews, revises and develops policies to implement the directives of the Health Commissioner and the Medical Examiner.

Directs, through a subordinate administrator, the activities staff engaged in a variety of administrative, clerical and custodial duties; directs the security and maintenance of the forensic building, including custodial, parking lot, and other related properties; directs the maintenance of City-owned cemeteries; manages security issues, insurance and liabilities of the Medical Examinerís Office and its obligations to the public; directs the provision of all clerical and administrative support services for the division; directs the maintenance of records for the Medical Examinerís Office.

Directs the preparation of the divisionís budget; anticipates operational and agency needs; sets priorities and deadlines; manages budget for the Medical Examinerís Office; identifies sources of grants and operating costs; manages procurement activities for the division; directs, through subordinate supervisors, the control and maintenance of adequate inventory levels; directs the selection of equipment and supplies for autopsy;

Directs the maintenance and disposal of specimens and all related materials and substances; ensures staff compliance with effects and evidence procedures; develops policies and procedures concerning identification of decedents, notification of next-of-kin, body pick-up and release, serving subpoenas, photography, effects and evidence; testifies in court in criminal and civil cases.

Directs the provision of specialized, contracted forensic services such as management of an information system for analysis, evaluation and preparation of statistical and narrative reports, crisis intervention for bereaved families or victims, and neuropathology, and odontology; supervises counseling of families of crime victims and advocating for crime victim compensation; administers all contracts and an affiliation agreement of the Medical Examinerís Office.

Represents the Medical Examiner on various committees and boards including the Board of Health and Infection Control Committee and other organizations to discuss the medico-legal role of the Medical Examinerís Office; attends committee meetings and works with groups such as Philadelphia Corporation for Aging Heat Advisory Group; interprets the intent and impact of statutes and regulations on the Medical Examinerís Office; directs and participates in the review and evaluation of research activities and proposals of provider agencies, research institutions and government authorities as they involve subjects of the Medical Examinerís Office; gathers data on specific aspects of operations and performs analyses to evaluate program effectiveness; prepares recommendations for revision of procedures concerning delivery of services; conducts studies such as homicide rates in the city and develops the agenda for discussion about medical/legal risks; identifies and initiates collaborations with other agencies.

Directs the monitoring of health and safety response in areas such as heat-related deaths, infectious and communicable diseases, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome and co-sleeping deaths, consumer product deaths, child abuse and neglect, elder abuse and neglect; directs the divisionís participation on a mass disaster response team in order to identify victims, notify victimís families and to collect and maintain evidence relating to identity and cause and manner of death.

Directs staffing and work scheduling to effectuate the most productive and cost-effective use of personnel; assesses overtime needs; establishes and implements plans and strategies regarding the evaluation and training of the forensic staff; approves special on-the-job training as needed; establishes procedures to monitor, evaluate and control job activities and responsibilities; confers with subordinate supervisors on the planning of various functions of the Forensic Services section resolves labor relations issues and employee grievances; confers with union officials about corrective measures; attends or designates representatives to disciplinary hearings; determines final course of action.

Directs the preparation of media response through the departmentís spokesperson; reports cases to the relevant agencies; directs the preparation of a wide range of reports on operational activities.

Performs related work as required.


(The following statement represents the minimum training and experience standards which will be used to admit or reject applicants for tests. Applications submitted by candidates for this class will be reviewed based on training and experience requirements as approved on 10/08.)


Ability to physically perform the duties and to work in the environmental conditions required of a position in this class.


Possession of a valid proper class motor vehicle operatorís license as issued by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania prior to appointment and during tenure of employment as a Forensic Services Director


Class Established:
CSC: 9/08, Ad Board: 10/08