Recently, Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan had informed the Rajya Sabha that the apex medical institute will soon start Virtual Autopsy Centre that will be the first of its type not just in India but whole South Asia.
"We have decided to impart the skills and training on virtual autopsy to other interested institutes, once the facility gets functional at AIIMS. This training programme will be free of cost. Under the strong vision of (Prof) Balram Bhargava who is the ICMR-Director General, the forensic department is able to get the Virtual Autopsy Centre at AIIMS," Prof Sudhir Gupta, the Head of AIIMS' forensic department told ANI.
In cases involving sudden, unnatural and suspicious death, identifying the cause of death is different and it is a challenging task to analyse the cause of death.
Prof Gupta says that digital autopsy is a need of the hour in India. "Many times, deceased family members object on conventional i.e. traditional post-mortem technique. It is the time when we have to understand their sentiments. In such a situation, the digital autopsy can serve as an alternative method to collect the evidence to determine the cause of death," he said adding that the data can be saved re-examined in future.
Dr Abhishek Yadav, Assistant Professor at Forensic Division at AIIMS said, "Presently, digital autopsy facility is available in some countries like Switzerland, Japan, USA etc. I have personally visited the University of Zurich to understand the technique of virtual autopsy. We will further enhance the digital autopsy facility similar to the forensic services available at the University of Zurich in Switzerland."
"We have prepared a training module as per the requirement in India. This training program for other interested institutes will help in creating more such Virtual Autopsy Centres in India," said Dr Yadav.