OBJECTIVE: 'To identify parents' experience of a follow up meeting and to explore whether the conversation was adequate to meet the needs of parents for a follow-up after their child's death in the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU).
DESIGN AND SETTING: Qualitative method utilising semi-structured interviews with six pairs of parents 2-12 weeks after the follow-up conversation. The interviews were held in the parents' homes at their request. Data were analysed using a qualitative, descriptive approach and thematic analysis.
FINDINGS: Four main themes emerged: (i) the way back to the PICU; (ii) framework; (iii) relations and (iv) closure.
CONCLUSION: The parents expressed nervousness before the meeting, but were all pleased to have participated in these follow-up meetings. The parents found it meaningful that the follow-up meeting was interdisciplinary, since the parents could have answers to their questions both about treatment and care. It was important that the staff involved in the follow-up meeting were those who had been present through the hospitalisation and at the time of the child's death. Parents experienced the follow-up meeting as being a closure of the course in the PICU, regardless the length of the hospitalisation.