Forensic Medicine
The Forensic Pathologists' offices and the histopathology laboratory are physically located at Inkosi Albert Luthuli Central Hospital. The Student Co-ordinator is located at the Medical School (719 Umbilo Road, Room 145 within the School of LMMS), Durban.

Autopsy and medico-legal services for the Greater Durban area and consultative services to the whole of the KZN region are provided. Autopsy work is performed at mortuaries run by the Department of Health and our staff are either University and/or Provincial Health employees and do not work for the police, as is a common misconception.

The range of cases investigated includes road traffic fatalities, suicides, accidents at home and at work, homicides and sudden natural deaths as well as in-hospital deaths under anaesthesia and other unexpected hospital deaths. The range of analyses performed upon these cases is extremely wide and dictated by the specific case problems. We undertake our own histological, radiological, neuropathological and anthropometric studies. Tests for forensic odontology, serology, toxicology, ballistic studies, etc. are referred to appropriate experts.

Under-graduate teaching within the Faculty of Medicine as well as a Master of Medicine course for training specialist forensic pathologists (accredited by the Health Professions Council of South Africa) is offered. The discipline is also involved in providing postgraduate training to medical practitioners, nurses and paramedics. In-house practical and theoretical training for district medical officers (previously called district-surgeons) for clinical and post-mortem work is provided, and these candidates are encouraged to sit the Diploma in Forensic Medicine offered by the College of Medicine of South Africa.

The discipline plays an important role in preventative medicine by being involved in accident investigation (injuries at work, aircraft and road traffic accident investigation). The expertise of forensic pathologists is also applied in traumatology to the detection and prevention of torture and human rights abuses. Co-operation with private pathologists and NGO's involved in investigation of suspicious deaths is encouraged, and there are practitioners who have established contact with International bodies such as Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) USA and Amnesty International (UK).

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