This study aimed to know the reactions and feelings of nursing professionals facing death of patients under their care. This is a qualitative research developed at the Medical Clinic Unit of a university hospital in Southern Brazil. The population of the study was composed of four nurses and five nursing technicians that work in this unit. Data were collected in the second semester of 2006 through semi-structured interviews and analyzed using thematic analysis. The analysis produced three categories: reactions of nursing professionals facing death in daily work, feelings facing death in daily work and the nursing team members facing the care of the body after death. The results indicate that there is a need for discussing this issue in the workplace in order to prepare these healthcare workers for dealing with the death of their patients.
Death; Attitude to death; Nursing care