Table 2

Strategies for enhancing the credibility of qualitative research

Truth value▸ Reflexivity and reflection on own perspectives:
– Reflective journal maintained and decisions documented
– Peer debriefing to assist the researcher to uncover taken for granted biases, or assumptions, for example, the initial qualitative interviews with patients were medically focused and subsequent interviews took a more holistic approach.
▸ Representativeness of the findings in relation to the phenomena:
– The sample of 19 carers of patients managed in a renal supportive care service and a willingness to share their experiences in depth and over time enabled clarification of findings as an ongoing process;
– Semistructured audio recorded interviews allow for repeated revisiting of the data to check emerging themes and remain true to participants’ accounts of caring for patients with renal disease managed without dialysis;
– Use of rich and thick verbatim extracts from carers of patients managed without dialysis assists the reader to make judgements about whether the final themes are true to participants’ accounts;
– Participants invited to comment on the research findings and themes 
Consistency/neutrality▸ Achieving auditability:
– Transparent and clear description of the research process from initial outline, through the development of the methods and reporting of findings. In addition maintaining a research diary documenting challenges and issues assisted in maintaining cohesion between the study's aim, design and methods;
– Emerging themes discussed with research team members who had palliative and qualitative research expertise in an open process where assumptions could be challenged and consensus reached 
Applicability▸ Application of findings to others contexts:
– Rich detail of context, the renal setting, including the patients managed within the service, facilitates the evaluation of study conclusions and transferability to other renal units