Comparison of Health Behaviors of Healthcare Workers and the General Public in Israel: A Cross-Sectional Survey

Shira Ramot, Orna Tal, Tova Rosenbloom

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Healthcare workers (HCWs) are role models and advisors for promoting health behaviors among their patients. We conducted a cross-sectional survey to identify and compare the health behaviors of 105 HCWs and 82 members of the Israeli public. Of 13 health behaviors examined, undergoing screening tests, getting influenza vaccines and smoking were significantly different between the HCWs and the public. Further comparison between physicians and other HCWs (e.g., nurses, physiotherapists, dieticians) showed that the physicians reported the least favorable health behaviors: having less than 7 h of sleep, being less likely to eat breakfast, having greater alcohol consumption and being least likely to undergo regular screening tests. Analysis of a composite healthy lifestyle score (which included 11 health behaviors) showed statistically significant differences among the three groups (p = 0.034): only 10.6% of the physicians had a high healthy lifestyle score compared to the other HCWs (34.5%). In conclusion, the HCWs and the public report suboptimal health behaviors. Beyond the concern for HCWs’ personal health, their health behaviors have implications for the health of patients and the general public, as they play an important role in health promotion and counseling. HCWs’ suboptimal “health profile” mandates implementing policies to improve their knowledge of recommended health behaviors, primarily targeting physicians, even at an early phase of their professional journey.

Original languageEnglish
Article number268
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number3
StatePublished - 27 Feb 2024

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2024 by the authors.


  • health behaviors
  • health education
  • healthcare workers
  • nurses
  • physicians


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