Addendum: Forensic Pathology Assessment Framework v.2.1

As of 1 January 2019, the following addendum shall enter into force with regard to the Forensic Pathology Assessment Framework. Collegial review (also called shadowing) in the forensic pathology field of expertise must at least be carried out by an expert from the same field of expertise, being a forensic pathologist. The reporter must provide a written explanation in his/her report in the event of a deviation from this requirement.

The NRGD has found that reports were regularly reviewed by a forensic physician, and not by a forensic pathologist. A collegial review involves 'colleagues specialised in the same subject area'. A forensic physician has a different field of expertise than a forensic pathologist. Given the current practice in the Netherlands, the Board considered it necessary to tighten the policy with regard to this point.

The fundamental principle remains that a collegial review must be performed by an expert from the same field of expertise, in this case a forensic pathologist. If the applicant has had to rely on the expertise of a forensic physician, not a forensic pathologist, the Board will apply the comply or explain principle. In reports compiled after 1 January 2019, the applicant will have to explain any deviation from the general rule. In doing so the reporter must address the following aspects:

  • Why the report could not be reviewed by a forensic pathologist.
  • The specific expertise of the person that performed the collegial review.

The List of Forensic Pathology Case Information is adapted accordingly. Reporters that submit an application based on reports prior to 1 January 2019 can expect to be asked by the Advisory Committee for Assessment to provide an explanation about the way in which the collegial review took place.