NEW YORK – New York City’s economy may have disappeared in the coronavirus age, but there is at least one bright spot on the job market: death work.
Since March 23, New York City has published at least 44 job openings for death technicians and medical investigators, the latter a job that involves conducting “death investigations.”
The hiring round is one of the many by-products of the coronavirus outbreak, according to New York City’s Office of Chief Medical Examiner, the nation’s largest.
“Available positions for medical investigators and death staff were recently published by our agency, and we are assessing applicants right now,” said Aja Worthy-Davis, an office spokeswoman.
The job is not for the faint of heart. But they are undoubtedly important. As of Wednesday afternoon, New York’s death toll had hit 4571. It does not include the countless number of New Yorkers who have died at home without a hospital-wide diagnosis. Funeral directors and cemeteries have been overwhelmed with the influx of bodies over the past three weeks.
“[I’m] Sure, the need for staff is urgent: workers who help with body transportation, those who coordinate to keep track of bodies in the refrigerators, workers needed to find and report relatives, “emailed Sally Aiken, a Spokane, Wash., medical examiner and chair of the National Association of Medical Examiners.
Worthy-Davis declined to say how many life technicians and medical investigators the office employs during normal times. In total, the medical examiner has 600 workers and examines approximately 8,500 deaths per year.
The department is now in search of 27 dead technicians and 17 medical investigators. The latter category includes two deputy directors of forensic investigations, who will earn $ 122.00 per year. Loose technician salaries range from $ 39,000 to $ 54,000. Some jobs are listed as “temporary,” indicating that they will no longer exist when the pandemic is relieved.
A prerequisite for any of these jobs seems to be an unusual comfort with mortality.
The medical technicians help “prepare the deceased for autopsy by removing clothing from the body”, weighs the deceased, lifts the body on the autopsy table and removes the upper part of the skull or skull, a job says.
When the autopsy is complete, they must replace the organs, pack the cavities, perform sutures, shelf the body and place it in a storage box. They will also be commissioned to show up at places of death to prepare the body for transport, including by attaching toe marks and placing bodies in the bag.
“NYC has their hands full just to make sure bodies are properly identified, stored so that they don’t disintegrate and eventually released to the right place – all of which are huge commitments but important,” Aiken said.