Table 1

The interview questionnaire and preferences of the Saudi mothers (n = 402) about breaking bad news (BBN) concerning their newborns

Interview Questionnaire

Preferences*

Kendall's W test


1. The BBN process should initially involve whom?

A. Myself and my husband together in the same setting.

64% (60-69)

0.29

Weak agreement

p < 0.001

B. My husband first, and he will decide about the process of BBN to me.

17% (13-21)

C. Myself first.

16% (13-20)

D. The most responsible physician should decide.

3% (2-5)


2. Would you agree if your husband requested to disclose the bad news to you through him in order to minimize your trauma?

A. Yes.

24% (20-29)

0.27

Weak agreement

p < 0.001

B. No.

76% (72-81)


3. How best should the BBN be delivered?

A. In person.

88% (85-91)

0.58

Moderate agreement

p < 0.001

B. In person

    or
over the phone.

12% (9-16)


4. When would you prefer the BBN to be?

A. Early on, as soon as the bad news was identified.

79% (75-83)

0.48

Moderate agreement

p < 0.001

B. The next day during routine postnatal rounds.

16% (12-20)

C. The most responsible physician should decide.

5% (3-7)


5. By whom would you like to be informed if the most responsible physician is not on-site, such as outside regular working hours?

A. The most responsible physician, even if BBN needs to be postponed to the next day until he/she will be around.

50% (44-56)

0.14

Very weak agreement

p < 0.001

B. Any physician who has a good understanding of the disease.

41% (35-47)

C. The most responsible physician should decide.

9% (6-13)


6. How detailed do you prefer BBN to be?

A. Detailed.

81% (77-85)

0.52

Moderate agreement

p < 0.001

B. Brief.

16% (13-20)

C. The most responsible physician should decide.

3% (2-5)


7. How do you prefer the details to be communicated to you?§

A. All at once during the first meeting.

58% (52-63)

0.03

Very weak agreement

p = 0.005

B. Gradually.

42% (37-48)


8. Do you prefer the BBN meeting to be quiet and free even from minor distractions, such as the informer answering non-urgent pager/phone calls?

A. Yes.

86% (83-90)

0.53

Moderate agreement

p < 0.001

B. Neutral.

14% (11-18)


9. Do you prefer during BBN to have close bodily contact with your baby such as holding him/her in your lap?

A. Yes.

66% (61-70)

0.10

Very weak agreement

p < 0.001

B. No.

34% (30-39)


10. Do you prefer during BBN that one of your relatives or friends be there as a support person?

A. Yes.

56% (51-61)

0.01

Very weak agreement

p = 0.02

B. No.

44% (39-49)


11. Would you prefer during BBN that no another patient or his/her relatives be present?

A. Yes.

64% (59-68)

0.08

Very weak agreement

p < 0.001

B. Neutral.

36% (32-41)


12. Would you agree to detail in advance your preferences regarding the process of BBN by giving a reversible, written informed consent which will be kept in your medical record and utilized as guidance if needed?

A. Yes.

80% (76-84)

0.36

Moderate agreement

p < 0.001

B. No.

20% (16-24)


*Expressed as a percentage (95% confidence interval).

Question 2 was presented only to those whose did not prefer response B in Question 1 (n = 335).

Question 5 was presented only to those who preferred BBN to be in person and early (Response A in both Questions 3 and 4) (n = 283).

§ Question 7 was presented only to those who preferred BBN to be detailed (Response A of Question 6) (n = 325).

Al-Abdi et al. BMC Medical Ethics 2011 12:15   doi:10.1186/1472-6939-12-15

Open Data