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J Forensic Leg Med. 2012 Aug;19(6):345-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jflm.2012.02.026. Epub 2012 Mar 18.

Membership survey of the Australasian College of Legal Medicine: Quality assurance.

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Australasian College of Legal Medicine, Australia.



The Council of the Australasian College of Legal Medicine (ACLM) considered it timely to survey its membership to determine how to best accommodate its members' needs.


A questionnaire was devised, piloted and circulated amongst the 219 College members (excluding the 13 Honorary Fellows). Yield was maximised with 4 direct mailings, 4 questionnaire insertions in the quarterly College newsletter, 3 targeted emails and follow-up phone calls.


The survey achieved 160 (73%) response rate of whom ∼40% were substantially involved in legal and forensic medicine and ∼40% were occasionally involved. Thirty-five participants (23%) specialised in forensic medicine and 101 (63%) held Fellowship status in other recognised medical specialities. Equal ⅓ of the members had been so for >10 years, 5-10 years or <5 years, demonstrating the dynamic nature of the College. Of them 53% were Fellows, 26% Members and 21% Associates with 50% of the latter groups willing to train towards Fellowship. About half the respondents (48%) regularly attended the Annual Scientific Meeting (ASM) and favoured the Eastern border for such meetings. The collegiate nature of the College was deemed its most positive aspect with a dichotomy of views regarding seeking alternative strand affiliation for specialist recognition, although 80% indicated they would retain College membership even if such affiliation occurred. Those who attended College educative programs found them useful but attendance was between 32 and 49%, depending on the course.


There appeared widespread satisfaction with College performance and activities but a low uptake of educative courses, other than Annual Scientific Meetings, thereby identifying marketing of courses as needing extra attention.

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