Table 1. Themes with accompanying examples of context–mechanism–outcome configurations
ThemeExample context–mechanism–outcome configurations (CMOCs)
Identifying bereaved patientsIf there are no systematic and consistent processes for recording deaths and bereavement (C) clinicians may not be able to identify the bereaved patient (O), because of a lack of awareness (M) (CMOC1)When clinicians have a pre-existing knowledge about the preferences of a recently bereaved person (C), they are more likely to make contact (O), because of their familiarity [of their preference] (M) (CMOC5)
Bereaved person’s expectations of what primary care can provideWhen a patient has a bereavement (C), most will expect to be contacted after a bereavement (O), because they believe clinicians are meant to care for them in the hour of their need (M) (CMOC7)When a person is suffering from bereavement (C), they may be unable to seek help or ask for help (O), because they feel overwhelmed (M) and/or hopeless (M) (CMOC11)
Responding to bereaved patientsWhen clinicians have had limited education in the diagnosis and management of bereavement (C), they find dealing with such patients challenging (O), because of their knowledge gaps (M) (CMOC13)Whether or not professional training has been undertaken, when dealing with patient bereavement (C) clinicians find the experience uncomfortable or unpleasant (O) because such encounters can be emotionally charged and distressing (M) (CMOC17)When clinicians have personal and experiential knowledge of bereavement (C) they have a better understanding of how to manage bereaved patients (O), because they can empathise (M) and appreciate (M) their needs (CMOC19)
For full list of CMOCs with accompanying quotes see Supplementary Table S2