According to Vida Lock, Director of Cleveland State University nursing school, "forensic nursing bridges the gap between health care and law enforcement. It’s the application of the science and art of nursing to criminal and civil investigations and legal matters. Forensic nurses provide care to victims and perpetrators of trauma or death due to traumatic events or criminal acts."
A medical degree is required, but not a separate law degree, for this role. Forensic pathologists may work for an independent lab, or for a government municipality as a coroner or medical examiner.
Medical Malpractice AttorneyMedical malpractice attorneys specialize in trying cases involving a mistake, or alleged mistake made by a physician, that was detrimental to a patient's life, or, in some cases, ended a patient's life prematurely. When a medical mistake occurs, the patient, or family of the patient, seeks compensation for pain and suffering and loss of work, among other things that may have been caused by the physician's mistake, or "malpractice."
Medical malpractice attorneys have a law degree (J.D.)from an accredited graduate law school, and some may have a master's or doctorate level degree in a healthcare-related discipline but that is certainly not required in order to practice as medical malpractice attorney.
Some medical malpractice attorneys may specialize in representing the patient's side of the law suit, (plaintiff), while other medical malpractice attorneys may specialize in defending physicians against a claim.
Medical Expert WitnessIn some law cases that involve medical malpractice, or personal injury or death, medical professionals may be needed to lend their expertise, and to testify in cases for the defense or the prosecution. This may include but is not limited to psychologists, doctors, pathologists, medical social workers, and more.
Expert witnesses should ideally have clean backgrounds and solid credentials including professional experience as a clinician, and preferably graduated from a top medical school and residency training program. In substantial cases, medical experts may be compensated tens of thousands of dollars for their testimony. However, according to Giles Sexton, criminal defense attorney in Dacula, Georgia, the legal team typically seeks expert witnesses who are not professional expert witnesses. Therefore, being an expert witness is not typically a full-time career, but can be a great way for healthcare professionals to earn some extra money on the side.