Perceptions of relatives toward medico-legal investigation and forensic autopsy: A cross-sectional survey from rural Haryana

Rathinam, Rajesh Duraisamy and Chopra, Mukul and Singh, Abhishek and Bhardwaj, Anu and Mithra, Prasanna P and Siddique, Adiba (2013) Perceptions of relatives toward medico-legal investigation and forensic autopsy: A cross-sectional survey from rural Haryana. Journal of Medical Society, 27 (3). pp. 173-176.

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Abstract

Background: Currently, a greater emphasis is being placed on the active participation of patients and their families; it is time that the attitude and feelings of the families with regard to autopsies are investigated. Objectives: Therefore, the present study was planned with an objective to analyze and ascertain deceased family member’s attitudes toward medico-legal investigation and forensic autopsy. An additional objective was to determine factors influencing autopsy refusal by relatives of the deceased. Materials and Methods: Two hundred family members or relatives were selected randomly from the list of address and contact number prepared from all the cases on whom autopsy was performed from 2010 to 2012 at the MM Institute of Medical Sciences. Results: Data of 165 deceased personnel were processed and analyszd. 30.9% of the respondents had a primary level of education while 35.2% of them were illiterates. A high proportion of study subjects considered that autopsy would result in visible disfigurement of the body. Involvement of police/court (92.1%), no use in knowing the cause of death/nature of death (88.6%) and autopsy delays funeral (83.4%) were the three top most causes responsible for autopsy refusal by family members or relatives of the deceased. Conclusion: The experience and opinions of relatives and family members can be utilized in more effective management of medico-legal cases.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Autopsy, Family members, Perceptions
Subjects: Medicine > KMC Mangalore > Community Medicine
Depositing User: KMCMLR User
Date Deposited: 08 Mar 2014 07:02
Last Modified: 08 Mar 2014 07:02
URI: http://eprints.manipal.edu/id/eprint/139053

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