Department of Forensic Medicine
Part of a series on Forensic science Physiological Anthropology Biology Bloodstain pattern analysis Botany Dentistry DNA phenotyping DNA profiling Entomology Epidemiology Medicine Palynology Pathology Podiatry Toxicology Social Criminalistics Digital forensics Related disciplines Related articles Outline Category vte Autopsy room of the Charité Berlin Refrigerator in the Forensic Medicine at the Charité Berlin Medical jurisprudence or legal medicine is the branch of science and medicine involving the study and application of scientific and medical knowledge to legal problems, such as inquests, and in the field of law.As modern medicine is a legal creation, regulated by the state, and medicolegal cases involving death, rape, paternity, etc. require a medical practitioner to produce evidence and appear as an expert witness, these two fields have traditionally been interdependent. Forensic medicine, which includes forensic pathology, is a narrower field that involves collection and analysis of medical evidence (samples) to produce objective information for use in the legal system.Medical jurisprudence is concerned with a broad range of medical, legal, and ethical issues, as well as human rights and rights of individuals. Physicians have a duty to act in their patients best interest and can be charged in a court of law if they fail to do so. On the other hand, a physician may be required to act in the interest of third parties if his patient is a danger to others. Failure to do so may lead to legal action against the physician. Medical jurisprudence includes: questions of the legal and ethical duties of physicians; questions affecting the civil Under the second heading, there are many aspects, including: questions of competence or sanity in civil or criminal proceedings; questions of competence of minors in matters affecting their own health; and, questions of lawful fitness or safety to drive a motor vehicle, pilot an aeroplane, use scuba gear, play certain sports, or to join certain occupations. Under the third heading, there are also many aspects, including: assessment of illness or injuries that may be work-related (see workers' compensation or occupational safety and health) or otherwise compensable; assessment of injuries of minors that may relate to neglect or abuse; and, certification of death or else the assessment of possible causes of death. This, however, is the more commonly understood, albeit narrow, meaning of forensic medicine.