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Forensic Toxicology

A historic image of an early toxicology lab

Post-mortem toxicology analysis determines the absence or presence of drugs and other toxic substances in body fluids and tissues. These findings help medical examiners determine cause and manner of death.

Our Forensic Toxicology Laboratory also performs analysis on cases submitted by NYPD to determine the absence or presence of alcohol and other drugs.

The OCME Department of Forensic Toxicology operates the oldest post-mortem toxicology laboratory in the United States. In 1918, Dr. Charles Norris became the first Chief Medical Examiner of New York City. Dr. Norris established the forensic toxicology laboratory and hired its director, Dr. Alexander O. Gettler, who served in this position for over 40 years.

Technical Manuals

Accreditation Certificates