|Requirements to Become...|
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What are the Requirements to Become a Medical Examiner?
When considering possible career paths, do you find yourself torn between the fields of health care and law enforcement? While the two may not share many surface similarities, there exists at least one career that combines the duties of both: that of medical examiner. Medical examiners are physicians trained in forensic pathology. Appointed by law enforcement agencies, these professionals investigate deaths not precipitated by natural causes, (such as homicides, accidents, etc.), collecting forensic evidence like blood tests and DNA information that often substantiates testimony in criminal cases. If you have an aptitude for the biological sciences and feel compelled to serve and protect your fellow citizens, you make a great candidate for the office of medical examiner.
Get Your Degree
Because medical examiners are physicians first and foremost, the most critical step on this career path is obtaining your degree. As an undergraduate student, your curriculum should be science-based and include classes like chemistry and biology.
From there, you must pursue a graduate degree in medicine, culminating in a forensic pathology residency. These residencies take between three and eight years and offer paid training and work experience.
Medical Examiner Certification
The final requirements to become a medical examiner include getting certified as a forensic pathologist, the application for which requires passing an examination by the American Board of Pathology, and, ultimately, applying to your state for a posts. Post terms vary considerably by state, with some expiring after two years and others being effective until retirement.
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