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Table 1 Focus group topic guide

From: Palliative care in the emergency department as seen by providers and users: a qualitative study

Topic 1 – Critical issues and difficulties
The facilitator explores the issues perceived by the participants in assisting patients in advanced and terminal stages of illness, visiting the ED. Particular attention is paid to strategies for dealing with the physical, psychological, social and spiritual symptoms of patients and their relatives. Besides, she stimulates the participants to deepen the difficulties through the illustration of actual and lived situations.
Prompt: What are the problems associated with assisting patients with PC needs in ED?
Topic 2 - Reasoning about critical situations
The facilitator investigates the opinions and the perspectives of the participants about the reasons underlining the difficulties reported.
Prompt: What are the reasons behind these problems?
Topic 3 - Applied coping strategies
The facilitator explores the cognitive, emotional and behavioural strategies applied to cope with the reported issues.
Prompt: How do you face these critical points? What are your experiences? How do you try to solve them?
Topic 4 - Desired coping strategies
The facilitator investigates the opinions of the participants regarding other possible ways to cope with the reported issues.
Prompt: How do you think these critical issues can be effectively addressed? Which resources/strategies you think are appropriate?