Welcome to the Division of Forensic Medicine and Toxicology


Prof Lorna Martin is the Head of the Division of Forensic Medicine and Toxicology (DFMT) which comprises of four main research, teaching, and service components, namely (i) Forensic Pathology component, (ii) Gender Health and Research Unit, (iii) Biomedical Forensic Science Unit, and (iv) Forensic Toxicology Unit.


The Division of Forensic Medicine and Toxicology offers services in the medicolegal investigations of unnatural deaths as part of the joint staff of the Forensic Pathology Service (FPS) of the Western Cape Government Department of Health and Wellness (WCGHW), as well as teaching and research into various areas, including childhood deaths, the role of drugs in death, molecular autopsies in sudden unexpected deaths, violence and trauma, post-mortem interval determination and human identification.


The Observatory Forensic Pathology Institute (OFPI), is the latest development from WCGHW which has replaced the Salt River Mortuary. The Division performs all its services, and some teaching, training and research in this new building, which is situated in the Groote Schuur Hospital precinct.

Our Team


In the news


Written in the bones

This story originally aired on Carte Blanche on 29th October 2023. It’s a tragedy of catastrophic proportions, yet sadly under reported: infants abandoned in their first 24 hours of life and left to die.
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