Our conclusions: system advances and process improvements
We concluded that the Queensland Police Service and Queensland Health are providing forensic services that are mostly effective in supporting the investigation of crime and prosecution of offenders. Both agencies have maintained their accreditation under the National Association of Testing Authorities, which ensures they comply with relevant international and Australian standards.
They have also made some significant system advances and process improvements, such as developing the Forensic Register, and automation and advances in fingerprint services.
Our conclusions: illicit drugs and forensic medical examinations
Nevertheless, aspects of forensic service delivery are inefficient and at times ineffective, most notably the management of illicit drugs and delivery of forensic medical examinations.
The Queensland Police Service does not effectively coordinate how it collects, transports, prioritises and destroys illicit drugs. This contributes to inefficient practices that result in delays and a growing backlog for illicit drug analysis.
Forensic medical examinations is another area where cross-agency collaboration has not been working effectively. Some victims have been refused an examination or endured lengthy delays. This is not consistent with the standard of service the government and community expect.
Queensland Health and the Queensland Police Service recently committed to improve forensic medical examination services. The proposed reforms should be finalised as a priority.