Julia Hegert, MD
Dr. Hegert is a board certified forensic and anatomical pathologist who practiced as a forensic medical examiner for nearly 15 years prior to being asked to being asked to fulfill the position as Director of Autopsy Pathology for Orlando Health where she performs all of the organization’s autopsies in addition to teaching the pathology residents autopsy and forensic pathology. She was taught and firmly believes that autopsies are an aid to the living, through proper examination of the deceased. In this vein, she routinely presents autopsy and other anatomical pathology findings to a variety of hospital based monthly seminars and conferences. When the COVID-19 disease emerged and the pandemic spread, she, without question, agreed to perform complete autopsies in hopes to find out about the disease, so as to discover how to find a way to treat the living. From these cases, specimens which were sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the full genome was successfully extracted. Utilizing postmortem specimens to further research to treat and prevent disease, help families understand what happened to their loved one, and in forensic cases, to speak for the deceased in legal circumstances, has always been of up most importance to her.
Dr. Hegert received her Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Central Florida (UCF), graduating Magna Cum Laude and was a member of the Alpha Eta Honor Society. After working with the Center for Disease Control for a year, she returned to UCF to pursue pre-med studies and was accepted into medical school at the University of Miami, prior to receiving a second degree. During premed, thinking she wanted to be a surgeon, she was able to work with the Medical Examiner’s office as an autopsy assistant, and her course was redirected and set. Pathology residency was completed at Orlando Health and Forensic Pathology Fellowship was with the District 9 Medical Examiner Office.