The first inquest has just been held at the new NSW Forensic Medicine and Coroner’s Court, the largest coroner’s court and forensic medicine facility in Australia.
Located at Lidcombe, not too far from Rookwood Cemetery, the $91.5 million complex was opened officially opened in December, with staff and final equipment moved in during January.
There are more than 6000 deaths report to the NSW State Coroner each year.
Delivered by NSW Health with the Department of Justice, the complex is described as an exciting leap into the future of coronial and forensic medicine and services.”
Advanced technologies, increased capacity and new ways of working will help forensic medicine, coronial staff and police solve complex coronial investigations according to NSW Health and the Department of Justice.
The official opening press release said “Filled with natural light, the three-storey building has been designed to create a sensitive, calm environment for people dealing with unexpected loss.
“Specially designed examination and viewing facilities, tranquil courtyards and artwork will provide even greater dignity and respect for the deceased and their families.
“Adding to this, four state-of-the-art courtrooms will allow large, high-profile inquests and complex cases to be hosted, including mass casualty disasters.”
Key features include:
· private viewing and counselling rooms with dedicated facilities to support large family groups with dignity, including a multi-faith room;
· advanced additional clinical equipment to help provide cause-of-death answers in the least invasive manner;
· modern and expanded clinical facilities for NSW Health Pathology’s Forensic and Analytical Science Services Laboratories;
· 4 state-of-the-art courtrooms;
· multi-purpose rooms with giant high-definition monitors capable of screening inquests for the media and general public if a courtroom is full;
· audio-visual technology that allows witnesses to give evidence remotely; and
· advanced teaching suites.
The Forensic Medicine & Coroners Court Complex will meet the evolving needs of NSW’s diverse and booming population for decades to come.
What’s happening to the former Glebe Coroner’s Court site?
According to media reports, the state government plans to sell air rights for the NSW Coroner’s Court in Sydney’s Glebe and wants the buyer to develop the ground floor into central Sydney’s ambulance “superstation”.
Health Infrastructure NSW is seeking a partner to redevelop the former Coroner’s Court site at 42-50 Parramatta Road into the Central Sydney Metropolitan Ambulance Station, which will be retained by NSW Ambulance.
The chosen developer must also fund the construction of the ambulance station as part of the deal.