Deputy Chief Medical Examiner

WV Department of Health and Human Resources, Charleston, WV, US


The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR), Bureau for Public Health (BPH), Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (OCME) is currently recruiting Board-eligible/-certified forensic pathologists to fill a Physician Specialist position carrying the appointment as a Deputy Chief Medical Examiner (DCME) for the State of West Virginia. The position is offered at the Charleston central office. 

The DCME oversees the death investigation and prepares a medico-legal investigative report in preparation for potential expert testimony in Court systems statewide. Expectations are typical and include statewide case triage with the assistance of field-based County Medical Examiners (CoME) and office based forensic investigators (FIU); performance of external and internal examinations, interpretation of ancillary studies, completion of death certificates, formation of an expert opinion, and coordination of studies with approved third parties. 

Relevant Features: 

  • Code-mandated single-mission office= determine cause and manner of death 
  • Statewide Medical Examiner system with independence protected by code 
  • Investigative reports are not public documents in West Virginia 
  • Death scene attendance at the physician’s discretion 
  • Shared on-call duties rotated equitably 
  • No cases generally scheduled on Sundays or Holidays 
  • Postmortem organ recovery only with pathologist approval 
  • Opportunity to train CoME and rotating Medical Students 
  • Secure facility with highly restricted access to autopsy suites 
  • Liability protection provided by the State 
  • Reasonable relocation expenses reimbursed


Minimum Qualifications / Training: 
Successful completion of an American Board of Pathology (ABP) approved forensic pathology fellowship and ABP Certification or eligibility in Anatomic Pathology (AP) or Anatomic and Clinical Pathology (AP/CP) and Forensic Pathology (FP). Board eligible applicants will be expected to obtain AP or AP/CP Board Certification within one year of hire and FP Subspecialty Certification within one year of obtaining AP certification. Candidates should have knowledge of principles, practices, techniques and advances in the area of forensic pathology and medicolegal death certification. 

Other requirements: 
The applicant must be able to obtain both a license to practice medicine/surgery in the State of West Virginia and a valid West Virginia driver’s license. Additionally, the successful completion of a background investigation is required prior to start of employment. 

Possess a sufficient knowledge base, judgment and sufficient interpersonal skills to direct the work of ancillary professional and support staff in order to competently conduct effective death investigation into a wide variety of death circumstances; recognize and assign forensic import of a variety of potential natural, injury-related and toxicology-related causes of death; recognize death circumstances that compel notification to other public health or safety agencies; follow the departmental or institutional policies concerning all facets of the OCME workplace; and clearly communicate with a wide variety of people, both orally and in writing.


Benefits include: 

  • Competitive salary 
  • Paid vacation, paid holidays and paid sick/family sick leave 
  • Health, dental, vision, retiree health, basic life, and supplemental life insurance 
  • Flex benefits 
  • Deferred compensation and retirement

How to apply

Please email a resume to with the job title in the subject line.