As part of the 2019-20 State Budget, the State Government has committed to purchasing a new CT scanner for Forensic Science South Australia (FSSA), which will significantly reduce post mortem wait times.
In South Australia, the number of post mortem reports waiting to be completed has been steadily increasing, currently sitting at over 1100 cases, 20% of those over 9 months old including 5% over 12 months old.
These delays place unnecessary pressure on families of deceased relatives, and the justice system in general.
Attorney-General, Vickie Chapman said the new CT scanner would bring South Australia in line with best practice in other States around the country and substantially reduce wait times for families and ease delays in the justice system.
“Queensland, New South Wales, and Victoria all have dedicated CT scanners on-site, which allows for all bodies to be scanned on admission to the mortuary, giving the coroner crucial evidence in determining the necessity for a full or partial post mortem.
“In Victoria, for example, this has led to a post mortem only being undertaken in 50% of cases due to the use of a CT scanner, saving a significant amount of time and resources.
“With access to a dedicated on-site CT scanner here in South Australia, FSSA will be able to reduce backlogs and minimise the difficulties for families at a tough time,” Ms Chapman said.
The Government will now begin the process of purchasing the new scanner as a matter of priority.