What is a Medical Examiner?

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In the state of Wisconsin, each county individually chooses between one of two death investigation systems: a Coroner system or a Medical Examiner system. In general, a “Medical Examiner system” is one in which the office is supervised by a 'Medical Examiner', who is a county official appointed by the County Executive and/or the County Board of Supervisors. In the state of Wisconsin, the Medical Examiner is not required to be a forensic pathologist or physician. In contrast, a “Coroner system” is supervised by a 'Coroner' who is an elected official. Coroners in the state of Wisconsin are not required to be forensic pathologists or physicians. Both systems have the same authority under Wisconsin state statute.

Fond du Lac County operates as a “Medical Examiner system” and requires that the Medical Examiner be a licensed physician who is a board certified forensic pathologist.