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Focus: Forensic Sciences and Documentation

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Dr. Robin Haydel, an expert in forensic medicine, has arrived as a guest lecturer at Wyatt College. The health sciences department has invited her to do a presentation on forensic sciences and forensic medicine. When word of her presentation spread around campus, it generated a great deal of interest across multiple disciplines. As a result, the college administration opened up the lecture to everyone. Today Dr. Haydel will be speaking to a group of students majoring in health sciences, criminology, psychology, anthropology, and biological sciences, as well as their faculty.

"Welcome everyone," Dr. Haydel began. "Please take a seat so that we can get started." She waited as the last of the students straggled in to the room, noting a full lecture hall of at least 120 students, all interested in the world of forensics. "I wonder," she thought to herself, "if these students realize that there are many fields of forensics and not just the one they see on TV." She waited another minute, checking her PowerPoint presentation and testing her remote microphone. The room settled and she began by introducing herself, thanking the department of health sciences for the invitation.

"I am aware," she added, "that some of the health sciences courses here at Wyatt College are following a particular case study, that of a motor vehicle accident involving two vehicles and two families. Is that correct?" Voices in the audience confirmed it. "And you are, let me see …" She checked her notes. "We have medical terminology students, laboratory and radiology students, medical office assistants and medical records students, and first-year nursing students, right?" She looked up from her paper each time she spoke, noting the various cohort groups that had applauded and confirmed her list. She smiled. "Excellent," she said. "I will be tying a good portion of my presentation today to that contextual case study to demonstrate how forensic science and forensic medicine apply to you." She paused before going on. "I want to also thank everyone else for attending, and I hope that this presentation will be inclusive of you and helpful to your own interests and studies here at Wyatt."

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Critical Thinking
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Why would a health sciences department at a college invite a forensic medical expert to speak to their students?

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Learning Objectives

After reading Chapter 18, you will be able to do the following:

  • Understand the concept of medical terminology as a standard of professional practice.

  • Recognize the importance and legal ramifications of accuracy, specificity, and detail in patient/client documentation.

  • Internalize and exhibit professional documentation skills in the context of health care.

  • Understand the fields of forensic sciences and forensic medicine at an introductory level.

  • Appreciate the education, training, and work of forensic scientists and technicians.

  • Appreciate the role that medical terminology plays across multiple disciplines.

  • Appreciate the education, training, and work of medical transcriptionists.

  • Appreciate the ...

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