Relationship Between Sources of Information and the Willingness of Healthcare Workers to Risk their Lives for a Patient During the Peak of A/H1N1 Pandemic in Israel§

Yaron Bar-Dayan*, 1, 2, Sarit Natan Manor1, Noga Boldor1, 3, Inbar Kremer1, Maya Iohan Barak1, Yosefa Bar-Dayan4, 5
1 Department of Management, Bar Ilan University, Israel
2 Faculty of Health Sciences, Ben Gurion University, Israel
3 Israeli Center for Technology Assessment in Health Care, The Gertner Institute for Epidemiology and Health PolicyResearch, Tel Hashomer, Israel
4 Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Israel
5 Interdisciplinary Department of Social Sciences, Bar Illan University, Israel

© 2010Bar-Dayan et al..

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: ( This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* *Address correspondence to this author at 16 Dolev St. Or Yehuda, Israel; Tel: 00972578186215; E-mail:



The willingness of healthcare workers to risk their lives for a patient if a fatal transformation of the virus would occur is a major concern, especially during a pandemic where the need for adequate staffing is crucial and where the public atmosphere might increase anxiety and fear of exposure.


To examine the relationships between the source of information about the disease and the willingness of healthcare workers to risk their lives for a patient with a fatal A/H1N1 flu, during the winter A/H1N1 pandemic in Israel.


A questionnaire was distributed to healthcare workers in 21 hospitals and 40 primary clinics in Israel between November 26, 2009 and December 10, 2009 (the peak of the winter A/H1N1 flu outbreak).


The questionnaire was completed by 1147 healthcare workers. The most common source of information reported was television (65%), followed by speaking with colleagues and reading the Ministry of Health regulations (63%) each, internet (61%), and newspapers (51%). The least common sources of information were reading a scientific article (35%) and attending a professional lecture (31%). Willingness to risk one’s life was significantly higher in healthcare workers who reported that their source of information about the disease was reading a scientific article, Ministry of Health regulations, a professional lecture, or a colleague. Willingness was not significantly different among health care workers who reported that their source of information about the disease was television programs, a newspaper article, or general internet sites.


Willingness to risk one’s life for a patient is directly related to professional sources of information and is not related to nonprofessional information obtained from mass media.

Keywords: Healthcare workers, willingness, sources of information, H1N1 flu.