FAQs

What if I have questions pertaining to the content of the autopsy report?

If you have any questions or concerns about the autopsy report, please call us at 515-725-1400 during our public business hours (8:00 am–4:30 pm). We are available to discuss with you the...

How does the Medical Examiner help Families and Friends?

Once the cause and manner of death have been determined, the Medical Examiner signs the death certificate for those cases falling under their jurisdiction. When an autopsy is performed at the...

Why is a Forensic Autopsy Necessary if the Cause of Death Seems Obvious, Such as a Gunshot Wound?

A complete autopsy examination can uncover details necessary for determining manner of death and provide information that may need to be presented in court. For example, details in an autopsy...

What does the Iowa Office of the State Medical Examiner do?

The Iowa Office of the State Medical Examiner (IOSME) provides support, guidance, education, consultation, and training to County Medical Examiners and Investigators (CME-I’s), who are...

What do I do next when a loved one dies?

The first thing you need to do is take care of yourself. The following is a list of suggestions to help guide you through the medicolegal process:

  • When notified of a loved one’s
  • ...

What is a County Medical Examiner and County Medical Examiner Investigator?

A County Medical Examiner (CME) is a physician licensed within the state of Iowa and appointed by their respective County Board of Supervisors to conduct investigations necessary to determine the...

Can my loved one still be an organ and/or tissue donor?

Our office commonly works with Iowa Donor Network to arrange for organ and/or tissue donation. A need for an autopsy does not necessarily preclude organ and/or tissue donation. Although...

What is an autopsy?

An autopsy is a systematic examination of the organs of a body to determine the cause and manner of death and to assess any pathologic changes that may be present. A complete forensic autopsy...

Who can request that a forensic autopsy be performed?

County Medical Examiners, County Attorneys, and the State Medical Examiner have the statutory authority and obligation to request that a forensic autopsy be performed in cases where death is...

Who pays for the forensic autopsy?

The family is not charged for a forensic autopsy when one is requested as outlined in the FAQ. However, when an individual’s death does not fall under the County Medical Examiner’s jurisdiction,...

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Printed from the Iowa Office of the State Medical Examiner website on March 25, 2017 at 2:28pm.