Forensic Pathology Fellowship


Program Description:
The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (OCME), in conjunction with UNC Hospitals and the UNC Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, offers a one-year fellowship in forensic pathology. The program is fully accredited by the ACGME and is under the direction of the Chief Medical Examiner of the State of North Carolina. The OCME is located in Raleigh and is a branch in the Epidemiology Section of the North Carolina Division of Public Health. The OCME also functions as the Division of Forensic Pathology in the UNC Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine. The trainee performs approximately 250 forensic autopsies during the course of the one-year fellowship. These cases represent a wide spectrum of natural and traumatic causes of death. All autopsy examinations are performed under the supervision of board-certified forensic pathologists. The fellow is expected to manage his/her own cases and to seek assistance as needed. Consultations in subspecialty areas, including neuropathology, pediatric pathology, forensic odontology, and forensic radiology, are readily available within the UNC Schools of Medicine and Dentistry. Ancillary laboratory studies, including clinical chemistry, microbiology, and special histology, are also available through the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine.

The OCME is the central administrative office for the state-wide medical examiner system in North Carolina. The system investigates about 10,000 deaths in North Carolina each year. Approximately 40% of these deaths are autopsied, with one-third of the autopsies being performed by the OCME staff and two-thirds by contract with pathologists located throughout the state. The trainee will also serve as a county medical examiner, perform external examinations, and make decisions about the disposition of case calls. All investigative reports and autopsy reports from the entire state are reviewed by the OCME staff. The trainee fully participates in this review process. The trainee receives OCME support to attend a national forensic pathology meeting (National Association of Medical Examiners or American Academy of Forensic Sciences) and a forensic anthropology course during the course of the fellowship.

Program Requirements: Applicants must have an MD or DO degree and APCP-4 or AP-3 training. The applicant must also be eligible for medical licensure in North Carolina.

Stipends: The fellowship salary is competitive, and the benefits are those extended to other state employees, including health insurance, annual leave, sick leave, and retirement.

Program Director: Deborah L. Radisch, MD, MPH

Applications: Download the Application for Appointment to Graduate Medical Education at the University of North Carolina Hospitals here. Applications must be received by December 1 (19 months before start date of July 1) and interviews will be completed by February 28 (16 months before start date). Fellowship position offers will be made in March (15 months before start date). UNC Hospitals’ Housestaff Policies are available for review on the Graduate Medical Education website.


For further information and to submit the completed application and additional required documents (see application coversheet) contact:

Betsy McDonald
Program Coordinator, GME in Anatomic Pathology
303 Brinkhous-Bullitt Bldg CB 7525
Chapel Hill NC 27514-7525
Telephone: 919-966-7088