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Table 1 Categories of analysis and examples of triggering questions

From: Experience of oncology residents with death: a qualitative study in Mexico

CategoriesQuestion examples
1. Concept of death (the general and personal concept of death, the personal experiences associated with death and the concept of death in medical practice)What do you think about death?
How would you define “death”?
Have you ever had an experience with death, for example, a personal experience or with family/friends?
Have you ever thought about your own death?
Do you fear your death or that of others?
As a physician, how do you face death?
It is said that physicians have a tough attitude towards death, what do you think about that?
As a physician, do you think that your obligation is to avoid death?
Does the death of a patient make you think about your own death?
2. Actions and reactions toward death (the recognition of imminent death in a patient, communication of imminent death to patients and families, reacting as a medical professional confronted with patient death, manners of coping with death and support to deal with death on a daily basis)How do you feel when you know that a patient has a terminal illness and death is inevitable?
How do you decide whether you should inform the patient that he cannot be cured?
Who do you inform first, the patient or the family?
How do you tell a patient that death is inevitable?
What is your attitude when a relative of your patient asks you to conceal information?
Do you provide hope even if death is imminent?
Do you think that there are other specialists that could better deliver bad news?
Do you prefer to recommend other treatments instead of delivering bad news?
How do you feel when one of your patients dies?
Please describe to me any significant experience you have had dealing with the death of a patient
3. Training aspects to learn how to face death (subjects such as the social representation of the physician figure, specific training on facing death as a physician, models and anti-models, teaching others to face death, the participants´ self-perceived ability to cope with death and their recognized needs)During your professional training, were you offered any academic formation on delivering bad news?
What kind of reactions to death have you observed in your teachers?
Among the actions and reactions around you, have any served as an example?
Among the actions and reactions around you, have any seemed inappropriate or reprehensible?
In terms of your professional formation, what do you believe is necessary to acquire more and better tools to face death?
What would be your advice to a medical student or fellow resident?