Forensic Medical Evaluation Group (FMEG)

Our Story

The act of torture is a critical public health issue in the international community.  Torture perpetrators’ goal is to ultimately send a message of fear to the larger community. Torture victims and their larger communities experience serious medical conditions, and trauma symptoms. Acts of torture perpetuate when a deep lack of accountability exists. The Boston University Forensic Medical Evaluation Group has built medical-legal collaborations to document the effects of torture which in turn can be used to seek justice for the client.

The Boston University Forensic Medical Evaluation Group (FMEG), founded by Dr. Sondra Crosby and Dr. Elizabeth Burke, is a service for asylum seekers requiring documentation of prior ill treatment.  Part of the Department of Medicine, the School of Public Health and GLP, FMEG offers evaluation and documentation of physical and psychological evidence of torture and abuse in a supportive, and collaborative environment while working closely with attorneys.

In addition to performing medical evaluations, FMEG is actively engaged in advancing the field of torture documentation through academic research including scholarly publications, holding regular didactic sessions on all aspects of medical forensics, and teaching students (medical, law, and public health), medical residents, physicians, lawyers, and judges.

Mission Statement

The Forensic Medical Evaluation Group aims to:

  1. Provide independent forensic medical evaluations that are consistent with international best practices.
  2. Increase accountability to perpetrators through documentation.
  3. Further prevent future ill-treatment, therefore improve the public health.

The FMEG places great value and emphasis on raising the level of quality, professionalism and standards in forensic medical evaluation in the United States.

Process

Referral

At this time, our clinic offers medical and psychological affidavits for established patients who receive their primary care at Boston Medical Center.

Consult

Our FMEG coordinator will coordinate with client’s attorney a consultation appointment with the Forensic Medical Evaluation team to assess their priority health needs and social circumstances. Prior to the consultation, we ask that the asylum-seeker’s lawyer will provide our team with their declaration.

Evaluation

Our FMEG coordinator will coordinate with the client’s attorney for them to return to the clinic to complete medical and/or psychological evaluation and document any physical and/or psychological trauma. Evaluator will document any physical trauma such as scars by using diagrams and photographs. Please note psychological evaluation will require three to four visits with our evaluator.

Affidavit Drafting and Submission

Our evaluators will draft and finalize the client’s affidavit. The affidavit will be submitted to the asylum-seeker’s lawyer.

Continuity Care

We can refer our clients for continuity care to our Immigrant and Refugee Primary Care clinic or to one of our community based partners throughout the Boston area.

Contact Information

For more information, please email fmeg@bu.edu.

Link to the FMEG BMC Website

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