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Rev Med Inst Mex Seguro Soc. 2015 Sep-Oct;53(5):630-7.

[Learning about death from the undergraduate: Evaluation of an educational intervention].

[Article in Spanish; Abstract available in Spanish from the publisher]

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Departamento de Psiquiatría y Salud Mental, Facultad de Medicina, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Distrito Federal, México.


in English, Spanish


From June to November 2013 an elective subject "The doctor before death" was held in a public medical school. The aim of this report is to assess the achievement of the objectives of this course.


The main objectives of the course were to develop competences, aptitude for reflection before death and encourage changes in attitude towards it. Each session was preceded by an article on the content; during sessions the interaction with physicians and patients facing the approach of death was favored; audiovisual, computer resources were used and conducted discussions. The evaluation of the course was a retrospective questionnaire as a quantitative source, and semi structured interviews and essays as qualitative sources.


The development of competences, aptitude for reflection about death and attitude changes showed an increase after the intervention (p < 0.01); competence development had the smallest increase. With qualitative information 11 categories were integrated; all showed positive changes in attitude towards death, aptitude for reflection and developed competences (although in this respect the impact was minor).


The educational intervention evaluated met the objectives, however, for a future intervention is necessary to reinforce competence development.


Death; Evaluation; Medical students; Mexico; Terminal care

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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