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#437042 - 05/03/12 08:55 AM Police Pathologist On Go Slow?
Marty Offline
And so why hasn't Kelly's post mortem examination been done? Well, reports say that Police Pathologist Dr. Mario Estradabran is waiting for his contract to be renewed.

Today, police minister John Saldivar confirmed to us that government is, quote, "dealing with his contract." But, Saldivar says, during that time, Estradabran continues to do autopsies - even if not at a pace that the public would want.

As regards the contract, Saldivar says government has made a proposal, and Estradabran has sent back a counter-proposal.

We could not reach Estradabran to confirm his position.

Channel 7

#437122 - 05/04/12 09:43 AM Re: Police Pathologist On Go Slow? [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Coroner’s contract re-negotiation causing a corpse backlog

Over the past few days, reports have surfaced that families who have lost a loved one have had to delay funeral arrangements because of an issue surrounding post mortem examinations. A caller into WUB Morning Vibes expressing her concern.

We want to bury my little brother. We don’t even know if we can bury him this week. The week is already ending. They said the documents haven’t been signed for the doctors to go through with a post mortem. We are in pain and we can’t even make any funeral arrangements, all that we do is stand-by. How can the Government do this? He is the only man that does autopsies, him and a private doctor. What is happening to the poor people? Poor people can’t afford the other doctor that you have to pay an over thousand dollars for. Funerals are already expensive and then to go and do an autopsy private? They have the body for two weeks. We are really feeling this.

Reports are that the contract for Dr. Mario Estra-da-bran, the pathologist who has been conducting autopsies for the Belize Police Department for almost two decades, was not renewed. In an interview Estradabran said that a new contract is under negotiation since his expired on February 1st, 2012. He says he has still been conducting autopsies but over the weekend; but beginning last Friday (April 27) he decided to no longer conduct any until the decision on the contract is finalized. Separate from Estradabran, there is another pathologist, Dr. Hugh Sanchez who is often referred to for autopsies when the first is not available. However, Sanchez is employed by the Ministry of Health and reports are that he only conducts clinical autopsies for the KHMH. This means he only conducts an autopsy if a patient dies at the KHMH or a public hospital and if the death is non-crime related.


#437160 - 05/05/12 08:14 AM Re: Police Pathologist On Go Slow? [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Estradabran: From Go-Slow To Full Stop

According to an article in the Cayo Star newspaper, there is a backlog of 15 bodies awaiting post mortem examinations because police pathologist Dr. Mario Estradabran is awaiting a contract renewal. Estradabran told the paper that his 2-year contract with the government expired on February first of this year and that he is still negotiating a new one with the Ministry of National Security.

The STAR reports that although the contract expired, Estradabran would still perform autopsies when requested. But, as of last week he had totally stopped, pending his new contract.

But the backlog is beginning to be cleared: Police say three post mortem examinations were conducted today. The morgue fee at the KHMH is twenty five to fifty dollars per day.

Channel 7

#437197 - 05/05/12 03:45 PM Re: Police Pathologist On Go Slow? [Re: Marty]
Katie Valk Offline
Its always been a contentious relationship between Dr Mario and police and think the morgue only has space for 12 bodies. They must be putting two bodies per drawer or using ice, as in the old days. Dr Hugh Sanchez can also do PM's, but perhaps he is not here or not working in solidarity with Dr Mario. Lets hope BEL does not compound the problem by going on strike...ugh. I guess ME's are no different than other employees trying to hammering out an agreement.
Belize based travel specialist

#437370 - 05/08/12 08:43 AM Re: Police Pathologist On Go Slow? [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

K.H.M.H. has enough spaces in Morgue; but Police and Pathologist at Rigamortis

Adrian Coye

There have been numerous reports that families are unable to bury their loved ones because the postmortem examinations required by the police department have been, to say the least, at a deathly pace. The only forensic specialist in the country which is hired by the Ministry of National Security is Dr. Mario Estradabran. According to reports, Estradabran’s contract with the government reached its term on February first, 2012. The negotiations with the ministry are reportedly still ongoing. News Five contacted Estradabran today, seeing that it is widely speculated in the public that the services have slowed down during the negotiation process. Estradabran declined comment citing his commitments and meetings. However an article in Cayo’s Star newspaper dated April twenty ninth, says; “A source within the Police Department informed that…as of last week he has totally discontinued providing the service as he awaits word from the ministry on the new contract. The last postmortem he is said to have conducted on the body of Taylor Street gang leader, Arthur Young….the ministry reportedly sent him a contract, under the same terms and conditions as well as salary, as the previous one. He reportedly refused the offer and instead submitted one with changes in terms, conditions and of course with a sizable salary increase. His submission was reportedly rejected by the ministry prompting the commencement of negotiation for mutually acceptable new arrangements.” The speculation that the bodies are being piled up have been unfairly placed on the shoulders of the country’s primary healthcare provider, the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (K.H.M.H.). The K.H.M.H. houses the bodies brought by the police department, however, the issues that the Ministry of National Security and their forensic specialist has in no way affected the service offered by the KHMH morgue. According to the K.H.M.H.’s Director of Medical Services, the hospital has its own specialist and plenty space in the morgue freezer.

Dr. Adrian Coye, Director of Medical Services, K.H.M.H.

“The K.H.M.H. provides morgue related services; it’s the only facility to do so in Belize City or the central region. As you know other regions have temporary facilities. But for the country of Belize we have what would be regarded as the state service. We have now a capacity of twenty-one refrigerated areas and that has gone up from the past many months ago from nine. This is something that you will hear more about in the near future. At no point we are at risk of overflowing in respect to the last addition to the services that we’ve had. At no point we’ve been overflowing in the recent weeks as has been suggested by others. If someone was to die within the hospital, then depending on the circumstances related to the death of that person or the unfortunate passing of that person, some of them would require a post mortem—others do not because you may be able to say the cause of death is severe sepsis and a background of illness that will be in keeping with that. But if the death was unexpected or within twenty-four hours of say example an operation, we would want to determine the cause of death and we have within the employ of this hospital, Doctor Sanchez. There is another parallel and that is where we offer the service to the police at large where bodies that require coroner’s cases or postmortems are housed, you know, in our morgue. The postmortem that are done for these patients are usually done by another pathologist or Doctor Estradabran, in particular. So there are two different services in that exist.”

Jose Sanchez

“For clarity’s sake, the police related cases aren’t the responsibility or the charge of Doctor Sanchez or the K.H.M.H. itself.”

Dr. Adrian Coye

“Well they are clearly being housed in our facility and we take great efforts to make sure everything is secure. But our role is only that; to house the bodies and everything else that happens is related to police activity and Doctor Estradabran.”

Jose Sanchez

“Now the current situation at the morgue. How many bodies do we have? Are they police related cases or for the K.H.M.H.?”

Dr. Adrian Coye

“Well we do have right now five deceased from the hospital in the morgue and there are about five that are police related. Again then I say they are totally separate in terms of what happens to them.”

Jose Sanchez

“When it comes to the cases here that do require a postmortem, how long does it usually take per say? A day? How long? What’s the process?”

Dr. Adrian Coye

“Well the postmortems are done usually the next day—first thing in the morning. Usually there is some paper work that happens and if they are presented in a timely manner, then Doctor Sanchez is able to do them early; first thing in the morning and if not, the following day.”

Channel 5

#437738 - 05/11/12 09:14 AM Re: Police Pathologist On Go Slow? [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Estradabran’s Contract Approved

The Police Department has been able to conduct post mortems on 9 out of 11 bodies which had been awaiting the procedure after pathologist, Dr. Mario Estradabran had discontinued doing them while he awaited the renewal of his contract. The remaining post mortems will be completed tomorrow.

While the backlog has been cleared, the contract for Dr. Estradabran has been finalized. The contract has been revised and has been forwarded to Dr. Estradabran for his agreement and subsequent signing. It is expected that the contract will be signed on Thursday, May 10th.

Dr. Estradabran had discontinued doing autopsies while he was in negotiation with the Ministry of National Security. During the negotiations, he was asking for a higher salary along with other requests. Information suggests that most of his demands are being met and his contract should be finalized without a problem.

Meanwhile, the ministry does not anticipate that there will be backlogs in autopsy services.

The Guardian


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