Construction is complete on the new 33,000-square-foot, single story medical examiner facility. The building opened for business on June 8, 2020, and a virtual opening ceremony was held on Aug. 13.
The facility is located at 11894 S. Sunset Drive, on the Johnson County Government campus in Olathe.
The Medical Examiner’s Office (MEO) investigates deaths that occur in the county, including deaths due to violent means, are unattended or suspicious, in-custody deaths, deaths due to a public health threat, and deaths where identity is an issue. This includes deaths of individuals without a physician available and willing to sign the death certificate. Investigations may include medical record review, external examination, radiography, toxicology and/or autopsy. Following investigation, the MEO determines cause and manner of death and certifies the death certificate.
Johnson County broke ground on the construction project in December 2018. Voters approved a ¼-cent sales tax in November 2016 to build a $21 million facility.
The construction manager was McCarthy Building Companies, Inc. The architect was PGAV Architects. The project team visited peer facilities in New Mexico, Maryland, Kansas and Missouri to gather information on best practices, design efficiencies and ideas for specialty fixtures and equipment.
The goals of the new medical examiner facility are:
- Increase autopsy rates to meet appropriate national benchmarks
- Build a state of the art, high-functioning facility, known for excellence and leadership
- Facilitate National Association of Medical Examiners (N.A.M.E.) accreditation by meeting scientific requirements
- Provide reliable data for public health to identify trends and emerging diseases