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The Institute of Legal Medicine and the Health Service of the Canary Islands formalize their collaboration in La Palma

The Director General of Relations with the Department of Justice of the Government of the Canary Islands, Monica Ceballos, visited this week, together with the Director of the Health District of La Palma, Kilian Sánchez, the facilities of the University Hospital of La Palma that the Canary Service de la Salud has conceded, in order to develop the activities of the Pathology Service Legal, a collaboration now formalized by a joint decision signed by Ceballos herself and the Director of Health Services of the Canary Islands, Elizabeth Hernandez, the Canary Islands Government’s Ministry of Public Administration, Justice and Security reports in a press release.

He notes that this decision establishes the working procedures between the Institute of Forensic Medicine and Forensic Sciences of Santa Cruz de Tenerife (IMLCF-TF), attached to the Ministry of Public Administration, Justice and Security, under the administration of Julio Pérez, and the Department of Health Services of the Health District of La Palma of the Health Services of the Islands Canaries, to formalize the collaboration offered by the University Hospital of La Palma for autopsies, allowing said Institute to use the areas of anatomy and associated services.

He adds that it is also reflected in that, in the exceptional cases in which the auxiliary staff attached to the IMLCF-TF cannot travel to La Palma, to perform an autopsy with the pathologist, the Department of Health Services of the Health District of La Palma facilitates the provision of a pathology technician Performs autopsy assistant functions with time available for forensic autopsy practice, allowing time to be reduced.

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During his visit to the health center in La Palma, Ceballos noted the interest of the Ministry of Public Administrations, Justice and Security to “achieve excellence in the scientific and technical practice of autopsy, ensuring the fundamental development of anatomy.” mission “.

In this sense, and in order to adapt the hospital facilities to the new needs, I have initiated the procedure for acquiring four mortuary rooms, as well as an extractor to deal with formaldehyde, which will be installed in the hospital. Universitario de La Palma, which, in addition to the four cameras currently in place, will be shared by the said hospital and the forensic service of the IMLCF-TF.

Similarly, Ceballos noted the protocol for the collection, entry and exit of corpses, as well as their detention, at the IMLCF-TF on the island of La Palma, which strengthens legal safeguards in the practice of autopsy.

For his part, the Director of the La Palma Health District, Kilian Sanchez, stressed the importance of this joint decision, “because it guarantees the correct development of the process that governs the performance of judicial autopsies on the island, and it is both a duty to improve the technical equipment as well as the support that the health professionals of La Palma will provide to the workers in Institute of Forensic Medicine when they are unable to travel to the island.”

Also present at the visit to La Palma University Hospital was the Director of IMLCF-TF, Jesus Vega. Director of Public Administration and Resources for the La Palma Health District, Raquel Alonso; Hospital Care’s medical director, Dehiva Fernandez; and Director of Nursing at Care Hospital Javier Geronimo.

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It should be remembered, finally, as stated in the memorandum, that the mission of the IMLCF-TF is to provide advice and assistance to the courts, tribunals, prosecutors and judicial district civil registry offices in their field of work, by taking evidence experts, both pathological, clinical and laboratory. Along these lines, the Forensic Medical Service, as the operating body of the IMLCF-TF, was assigned medico-legal investigative functions, and carried out 46 autopsies in La Palma in 2022, with an average completion time of 24 hours.