Intake rigour : ensuring only “reportable deaths” become coroners’ cases

Barnes, Michael, Kirkegaard, Ainslie, Carpenter, Belinda, & (2014) Intake rigour : ensuring only “reportable deaths” become coroners’ cases. Journal of Law and Medicine, 21, pp. 572-583.

View at publisher


The failure of medical practitioners to consistently discharge their obligation to report sudden or unnatural deaths to coroners has rightly prompted concern. Following recent public scandals, coroners and health authorities have increasingly developed procedures to ensure that concerning deaths are reported to coroners. However, the negative consequences of deaths being unnecessarily reported have received less attention: unnecessary intrusion into bereavement; a waste of public resources; and added delay and hindrance to the investigation of matters needing a coroner’s attention. Traditionally, coroners have largely, unquestioningly assumed jurisdiction over any deaths for which a medical practitioner has not issued a cause of death certificate. The Office of the State Coroner in Queensland has recently trialled a system to more rigorously assess whether deaths apparently resulting from natural causes, which have been reported to a coroner, should be investigated by the coroner, rather than being finalised by a doctor issuing a cause of death certificate. This article describes that trial and its results.

Impact and interest:

2 citations in Scopus
Search Google Scholar™

Citation counts are sourced monthly from Scopus and Web of Science® citation databases.

These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.

Citations counts from the Google Scholar™ indexing service can be viewed at the linked Google Scholar™ search.

Full-text downloads:

519 since deposited on 31 Mar 2014
81 in the past twelve months

Full-text downloads displays the total number of times this work’s files (e.g., a PDF) have been downloaded from QUT ePrints as well as the number of downloads in the previous 365 days. The count includes downloads for all files if a work has more than one.

ID Code: 69587
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: coroners, reportable deaths, death certificates
ISSN: 1320-159X
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > CRIMINOLOGY (160200)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Crime & Justice Research Centre
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Law
Current > Research Centres > Australian Centre for Health Law Research
Current > Schools > School of Justice
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2013 Lawbook Co.
Deposited On: 31 Mar 2014 23:20
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2015 10:11

Export: EndNote | Dublin Core | BibTeX

Repository Staff Only: item control page