This funding record is inactive. Please see the program website or contact the program sponsor to determine if this program is currently accepting applications or will open again in the future.

Strengthening the Medical Examiner-Coroner System Program


Additional Links

Notice of Funding Opportunity (


Application Deadline: Jun 24, 2021

Sponsoring Organization

Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA)


Provides funding to support and enhance medical and legal death investigation services provided by medical examiner and coroner agencies by assisting with accreditation. Works to increase the number of forensic pathologists by helping Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) accredited forensic pathology fellowship programs recruit quality candidates that meet all of the medical education and pathology residency requirements. Focuses on two approaches to strengthen the medical examiner and coroner system:

  • Purpose Area 1: Forensic Pathology Fellowships that seek to establish a greater number of qualified forensic pathology practitioners.
  • Purpose Area 2: Medical Examiner-Coroner Office Accreditation that aims to improve the quality and consistency of medical examiner and coroner services.

Funds may be used for expenses related to the following categories:

  • Recruitment
  • Facility improvements and renovations
  • Equipment
  • Staffing and workforce development
  • Education and training for medical and legal death investigation
  • Accreditation

Amount of Funding

Award ceiling:

  • Category 1: $150,000
  • Category 2: $100,000

Estimated number of awards:

  • Category 1: 7 awards
  • Category 2: 10 awards

Project period: 24 months
Estimated total program funding: $2,000,000

Who Can Apply

Eligible applicants are agencies directly involved in medical and legal death investigations as part of their normal business, including:

  • Medical examiner or coroner offices
  • State and territorial governments
  • City, township, or county governments
  • Federally recognized Indian tribal governments
  • Tribal organizations other than federally recognized tribal governments
  • Public and state-controlled institutions of higher education
  • Nonprofits with or without 501(c)(3) status, other than institutions of higher education
  • Private institutions of higher education
  • For-profit organizations other than small businesses
  • Certain qualified individuals

Eligible applicants for Forensic Pathology Fellowships are limited to entities with programs that should meet or exceed the requirements of the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME).

Eligible applicants for Medical Examiner-Coroner Office Accreditation are limited to domestic medical examiner and coroner offices actively seeking accreditation through an independent accrediting organization, such as the National Association of Medical Examiners (NAME), the International Association of Coroners and Medical Examiners (IACME), or other appropriate accrediting bodies.

Priority is given to applicants who propose projects that will promote civil rights, increase access to justice, support crime victims, protect the public from crime and evolving threats, and build trust between law enforcement and the community.

To receive priority consideration, applicants must provide a sufficient narrative explanation describing how their project will advance work in one or more of the priority areas listed above.

Priority is also given to applicants who propose projects to benefit individuals in high-poverty areas or persistent-poverty counties.

To receive a poverty priority consideration, applicants must provide information to demonstrate that the individuals who are intended to benefit from the requested grant reside in high-poverty areas or persistent poverty counties.

For this funding opportunity, high-poverty areas are described as any census tract with a poverty rate of at least 20%, as measured by the 2013-2017 5-year data series from the American Community Survey. Persistent poverty counties are described as any county that has had 20% or more of its population living in poverty over the past 30 years, as measured by the 1990 and 2000 decennial censuses and the most recent Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates.

In fiscal year (FY) 2021, all state, local, and university and college law enforcement agencies must be certified by an approved independent credentialing body or have started the certification process in order to be eligible for grant funding.

Geographic Coverage


What This Program Funds

Buildings and Facilities • Capacity Building • Equipment • Operating Costs and Staffing • Training Providers

Application Process

Application instructions, requirements, and other information about the application process can be found in the funding announcement.

In FY 2021, there is a new two-step application submission process. To be considered timely, the applicant must have received a validation message from the submission and the full application must be submitted in JustGrants by the respective deadlines.

  • Step 1: Applicants will submit an SF-424 and an SF-LLL in by the June 24, 2021 deadline.
  • Step 2: Applicants will submit the full application, including attachments, in the JustGrants grants management system by the July 8, 2021 deadline.

Applicant frequently asked questions


For questions on submitting in

For questions on submitting in JustGrants:

For general or programmatic questions:

For technical questions:
National Criminal Justice Reference Service (NCJRS) Response Center
TTY at 301-240-6310
Live chat

Topics This Program Addresses

Healthcare Facilities • Healthcare Workforce • Infrastructure • Justice System