Continuing the Efforts to Take the Coroner's Office

to the Next Level

“Pam Gay is York County’s coroner, but she is so much more. She’s a caring, compassionate woman who has transformed her office into a force for community good. She’s fighting the heroin epidemic. She’s working to stem the tide of depression and suicide.
She deserves national recognition.”
– York Daily Record Editorial Board 12/21/16 
Death Investigation

 Pam (Hildebrand) Gay is age 55 and has been a Registered Nurse for 35 years with both Critical Care and Emergency experience including 15 years of Forensic Nursing

 As a Certified Forensic Nurse and a Certified Medicolwegal Death Investigator, Pam's skills include, observation, documentation, forensic photography, and the collection and preservation of evidence.

 Pam has expertise involving interpretation of medical records, terminology, disease processes and human anatomy and physiology which are all utilized in the death investigation process. The Coroner does not conduct autopsies in York County, but may assist a licensed Forensic Pathologiest

 Under Pam's leadership as York County Coroner from 2014-2016, Pam and her deputy coroners have investigated approximately 1,625 deaths, handled 687 referrals to physicians for death certification, and reviewed and approved 6,157 cremation authorization releases.

Helping Families

In keeping with her 2013 campaign commitment, Pam has established a Compassion and Care Team to help the surviving family members when an unexpected death occurs. Today, the York County Coroner’s Office has a Compassion and Care Team made up of 13 Community Volunteers trained by Coroner Pam Gay and her sta to assist families in need after they have lost a loved one. The program, established in 2015, has helped hundreds of local families.

Teen Suicide continues to be a problem in York County with 2016 being the worst year on record. To address the teen suicide problem, Pam proposed bringing the Aevidum program to York County during her 2013 campaign for Coroner. The Aevidum program kicked o in the 2014-15 school year and is now in the following York County School Districts: Central, Dallastown, Dover, Eastern, Red Lion, Southern, West Shore and West York. The goal is for additional schools to adopt the program as it has had success throughout PA. The initial cost of the Aevidum program was covered by a $10,000 grant from the York County Community Foundation based on the grant request written by Coroner Gay and Cindy Richard of the York County Suicide Prevention Coalition. 

Fiscal Responsibility

• As a candidate in 2013, Pam publicly committed to not take a salary increase during a 4-year term of service. Since statue requires an annual cost of living increase be paid to county elected offcials, Coroner Gay and her husband established the “Jeff and Pam Gay Community Fund” through a personal gift and pledge of $25,000 to the York Community Foundation to provide grants that fund the cost of the York County Coroner’s Compassion and Care Team. 

Maximizing Technology

 Coroner Pam Gay quickly saw that one of the greatest technological e ciencies she could bring to the Coroner’s O ce was the use of Twitter. She became the second PA County Coroner to utilize Twitter in 2014, and now it has become commonplace for many municipal entities to deliver public information to media outlets in a timely fashion without showing preference, while saving enormous amounts of time to do other duties. There is no cost for this service.

 Pam Gay introduced E-Fax for funeral homes to request weekend and emergent Cremation Authorization. This service speeds the process of Cremation Review outside of normal office hours enabling families to proceed with funeral planning sooner. There is only a nominal cost for this upgrade.

• The Coroner’s Office continues to improve its web presence and, in conjunction with the York County Heroin Task Force website, there are now many resources available to help families seeking information, especially in regards to substance abuse. The updates to the Heroin Task Force website are done by a dedicated volunteer who lost a family member to heroin-related addiction. 

Community Education

 As a skilled educator, Pam Gay is committed to make the community aware of the impact of health trends and her teaching background has been effective in reaching teens, adults and seniors alike.

Pam has spoken at more than 100 community education events since becoming Coroner.

Pam Gay addressed the International Association of Coroners and Medical Examiners in Las Vegas, July 30, 2015 on the heroin epidemic. Pam presented the York County collaborative effort as a model for other coroner offices throughout the nation to consider. Similarly, Pam presented the innovative ‘York County Model’ of addressing the heroin epidemic at the PA Coroner State Conference on September 21, 2016. 

Media Relations

• With a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Communications in addition to her Nursing background, Pam is an outstanding written and verbal communicator – skills essential for a Coroner.


 Pam’s comfort level with the media has allowed her to bring the Coroner’s Office to the forefront in health trend awareness. 


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Paid for by A Nurse's Touch - Pam Gay for Coroner  © 2017 

Hon. Keith Gillespie, Chairman