Position Classification Description

Position Class Code / Title: T2061 / Autopsy Tech
Recruitment Tier: Tier 1
FLSA: Non-Exempt
Grade: 09

This is a description of a Staff Position Classification. It is not an announcement of a position opening. To view descriptions of current openings, please go to UNMJobs and Search Postings to view positions that are currently accepting applications.

The following statements are intended to describe, in broad terms, the general functions and responsibility levels characteristic of positions assigned to this classification. They should not be viewed as an exhaustive list of the specific duties and prerequisites applicable to individual positions that have been so classified.


Under general supervision, provides technical morphology lab services for hospital, forensic, or anatomical autopsy cases and general support to pathologists and other technical staff.

Duties and Responsibilities

  1. Receives bodies of deceased persons, ensuring appropriate confidentiality.
  2. Collects, inventories, and preserves valuables, personal belongings, and evidence and materials for case documentation and for legal chain of evidence, as applicable.
  3. Assists with the conduct of autopsies, as appropriate to the position, to include laying out supplies and instruments, handling, preparing, and recording description of the body, flushing blood and body fluids from body, performing prosection and evisceration, and labeling specimen containers; prepares and organizes specimens for storage.
  4. Takes photographs and x-rays of cadavers or carcasses; may develop or assist with developing photographs and x-rays.
  5. Disinfects bodies, facilities, and equipment after cases.
  6. Cleans and maintains laboratory equipment, facilities, and related materials; maintains and stocks inventory and supplies; prepares autopsy chemicals.
  7. Performs data entry on computer as appropriate; prepares applicable reports.
  8. Releases bodies and valuables to authorized persons.
  9. Assists in training resident physicians in autopsy procedures, as assigned.
  10. Practices safety, environmental, and/or infection control methods.
  11. Performs miscellaneous job-related duties as assigned.

Minimum Job Requirements

  • High school diploma or GED; successful completion of at least 3 credit hours of college-level coursework related to the duties and responsibilities specified; at least 1 year of experience directly related to the duties and responsibilities specified. An additional 4 months of directly related experience may be substituted for successful completion of at least 3 credit hours of college-level coursework related to the duties and responsibilities specified.
  • Completed degree(s) from an accredited institution that are above the minimum education requirement may be substituted for experience on a year for year basis.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities Required

  • Ability to maintain quality, safety, and/or infection control standards.
  • Ability to complete routine paperwork.
  • Skill in the use of personal computers and related software applications.
  • Knowledge of related accreditation and certification requirements.
  • Knowledge of autopsy procedures and methodologies.
  • Knowledge of legal and policy requirements related to the gathering, safekeeping and documentation of evidence.
  • Knowledge of autopsy chemicals, instruments, facilities and equipment.
  • Knowledge of inventory management practices.
  • Knowledge of cameras and photographic procedures.
  • Ability to work with distressing and/or unpleasant odors, procedures and circumstances.
  • Knowledge of x-ray procedures and equipment.
  • Ability to make administrative and procedural decisions and judgments on sensitive, confidential issues.
  • Knowledge of sterile procedures.
  • Knowledge of histology processing, such as quality assurance distribution, toxicology data entry, investigation file maintenance, and histology block maintenance.

Distinguishing Characteristics

    Position requires: a) performance of standard and/or routine autopsy and related procedures under guidance of senior technical staff; b) receiving and releasing bodies under established protocols and procedures; c) use of standard photographic and x-ray techniques and procedures under guidance; d) maintenance of laboratory equipment, facilities, and supplies.

Conditions of Employment

  • May be required to submit immunization records for review for required vaccines and TB testing.
  • UNM will provide Hepatitis vaccination, candidate may decline vaccination through declination form or may provide record of vaccination from previous employer.
  • Must pass a pre-employment criminal background check.
  • All regular, non-temporary positions assigned to this classification are represented by a labor union and subject to the terms and conditions of the US-UNM Collective Bargaining Agreement.
  • Successful candidate must submit to post-offer, pre-employment physical examination and medical history check.
  • Employees who provide services or work in patient care or clinical areas are required to be in compliance with the University's influenza vaccination requirement.

Working Conditions and Physical Effort

  • Work involves almost constant exposure to unusual elements, such as extreme temperatures, toxic chemicals, biohazardous materials, dirt, dust, fumes, smoke, and/or loud noises.
  • Extensive physical activity. Requires strenuous physical work; heavy lifting, pushing, or pulling required of objects over 50 pounds.
  • Work environment involves exposure to potentially dangerous materials and situations that require following extensive safety precautions and may include the use of protective equipment.
  • Will work in a death environment with occasional noxious odors.
  • Considerable physical activity. Requires heavy physical work; heavy lifting, pushing, or pulling required of objects up to 50 pounds. Physical work is a primary part (more than 70%) of job.

The University of New Mexico provides all training required by OSHA to ensure employee safety.

Revised Date: 01/10/2022