State of Maryland


- Hourly / - BiWeekly /
- Monthly / $31,286.00-$48,264.00 Yearly






An Autopsy Assistant Trainee is the entry level of work assisting a forensic pathologist in the performance of autopsy examinations of humans. Employees in this classification maintain, sterilize and clean the autopsy area and equipment. Employees in this classification do not supervise other Autopsy Assistant Trainee positions.

Employees in this classification receive close supervision from an Autopsy Services Supervisor. During autopsies, employees in this classification work under the direction of a forensic pathologist. Work is performed in the autopsy room of the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner. Employees in this classification may work weekends and holidays. The work involves assisting with the lifting of corpses and employees are frequently exposed to odors from human remains, chemicals and body fluids infected with contagious diseases. Employees are required to wear protective clothing and equipment when assisting with autopsies.

Positions in this classification are evaluated using the classification job evaluation methodology.  The use of this method involves comparing the assigned duties and responsibilities of a position to the job criteria found in the Nature of Work and Examples of Work sections of a class specification.

The Autopsy Assistant Trainee and Autopsy Assistant are differentiated on the basis of degree of supervisory control exercised by the supervisor over these employees. The Autopsy Assistant Trainee learns to perform duties under close supervision while the Autopsy Assistant performs the full range of duties and responsibilities under general supervision.


Learns to receive human remains and secure personal effects;

Learns to prepare corpses for examination;

Learns to assist a forensic pathologist in the opening, closing and suturing of corpses;

Learns to remove vital organs from corpses;

Learns to collect and label body fluids and tissues;

Learns to preserve pathological specimens as directed;

Learns to use X-ray and fluoroscopic equipment under the direction of a forensic pathologist;

Learns to take fingerprints from corpses;

Learns to assemble skeletal remains for examination;

Learns to assist grieving relatives or friends who are identifying bodies;

Learns to prepare corpses for release;

Learns to keep the autopsy area, equipment and instruments in a clean and sanitary condition and restock supplies;

Learns to operate refrigeration and incineration equipment;

Lifts and moves corpses and equipment;

Performs other related duties.


Ability to learn to assist with autopsies of humans;

Ability to learn to make and close incisions;

Ability to learn to remove vital organs;

Ability to learn infection control procedures;

Ability to learn to collect and label body fluids and tissue samples;

Ability to learn to operate X-ray and fluoroscopic equipment;

Ability to learn fingerprinting techniques;

Ability to learn to assist grieving friends and relatives in a professional manner;

Ability to learn proper sterilization and clean-up procedures.


Education:   Graduation from an accredited high school or possession of a high school equivalency certificate.

Experience: None.

Note: Experience embalming or assisting in the performance of autopsies on humans may be substituted on a year-for-year basis for the required education.




Class specifications are broad descriptions covering groups of positions used by various State departments and agencies. Position descriptions maintained by the using department or agency specifically address the essential job functions of each position.

This is a Skilled Service classification in the State Personnel Management System.  All positions in this classification are Skilled Service positions.  Some positions in Skilled Service classifications may be designated Special Appointment in accordance with the State Personnel and Pensions Article, Section 6-405, Annotated Code of Maryland.  

This classification is assigned to Bargaining Unit D, Health and Human Service Nonprofessionals classes.  As provided by the State Personnel and Pensions Article, Section 3-102, special appointment, temporary, contractual, supervisory, managerial and confidential employees are excluded from collective bargaining.  Additionally, certain executive branch agencies are exempt from collective bargaining and all positions in those agencies are excluded from collective bargaining.  

Employees in this classification are eligible to receive overtime compensation. An employee who works more than the normal workweek is entitled to be compensated for that overtime, as provided by the State Personnel and Pensions Article, Section 8-305.  

This classification is one level in a Non-Competitive Promotion (NCP) series. NCP promotions are promotions by which employees may advance in grade and class level from trainee to full performance level in a classification series.  In order to be non-competitively promoted to the next level in a NCP series, an employee must: 1) perform the main purpose of the class, as defined by the Nature of Work section of the class specification; 2) receive the type of supervision defined in the class specification and 3) meet the minimum qualifications of the classification.

Date Established

Jul 21 1998 12:00AM

Date Revised

October 20, 2017


Approved By

Director, Division of Classification and Salary

CLASS: 000335; EST: 7/21/1998; REV: 7/1/2019;

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