|Interview time||Topics explored|
• How family members saw the patients’ life before the stroke; how patients were coping and if they required any help for their day to day activities. The patients’ previous medical illnesses and experience with health care.|
• Whether patients had made any pre-stated wishes about treatments in the event of a critical illness and if so, the context in which these wishes were stated.
• The emotional reactions of family members to stroke diagnosis and their initial experiences in hospital; if and how they reacted to, and came to terms with, the diagnosis and potential poor prognosis
• The factors considered by family members when decisions needed to be made on treatments that were life-extending, but may leave the patient with potentially significant disability; how they arrived at a decision, and why
• Based on family members’ experiences in hospital, their early needs; how and why information or support may be useful to them, whether these changed over the first 2 weeks in hospital and if so, how and why.