The coroner's office is a statutory office determined by CRS 30-10-606 (1) which is mandated to establish the cause and manner of death. The cause of death is the injury, disease, or combination of the two that resulted in the person's termination. Manner of death refers to the circumstances in which the cause of death arose (such as: natural causes, accident, suicide or homicide).
The types of death that are reported to the coroner include:
- no physician is in attendance
- the attending physician is unable or unwilling to certify the cause of death
- the attending physician has not been in actual attendance within 30 days prior to the death
- all cases in which trauma (such as traffic accidents, gunshots, falls, etc.) may be associated with the death. This includes hospital inpatients who have sustained fractures any time in the past.
- deaths by poisoning, suspected poisoning, chemicals or bacteria, industrial hazardous material or radiation
- all industrial accidents
- known or suspected suicides
- deaths due to contagious disease
- deaths due to self-induced or unexplained abortion
- deaths that occur during a medical procedure and operating room deaths
- all unexplained deaths (i.e. deaths that occur in a healthy individual)
- deaths that occur within 24 hours of admission to a hospital or nursing care facility
- deaths in the custody of law enforcement
- deaths of persons in the care of a public institution