Home » News » MDs Modeling Healthy Behaviors Can Impact Patients

MDs Modeling Healthy Behaviors Can Impact Patients

MDs Modeling Healthy Behaviors Can Impact Patients  New research documents the power of physician role-modeling as investigators discover a direct, positive link between physicians’ preventive health practices and those of their patients.

Investigators looked at the screening and vaccination practices of 1,488 physicians and their nearly 2 million adult patients in Israel’s largest health maintenance organization, Clalit Health Services (CHS).

Health practices reviewed included compliance with screening practices of age appropriate mammography, blood pressure measurement, colorectal screening, annual influenza vaccinations and others.

For example, among patients whose physicians had received the influenza vaccine, 49 percent of patients received flu vaccines compared with 43 percent of patients whose physicians did not receive the vaccine.

“We found that patients whose physicians adhered to the recommended screening or vaccination practices were significantly more likely to also undergo screening or vaccination compared with patients of noncompliant physicians,” writes Dr. Erica Frank.

Frank worked with three Israeli researchers and their findings are published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal.

“For every preventive practice we examined, patients of primary care physicians who complied with the recommended preventive practices were significantly more likely to also have complied with those practices than patients of noncompliant physicians,” write the authors.

They note that some physicians could improve their personal screening and vaccination practices and that improving their own health should also improve their patients’ health.

“We should improve physicians’ preventive practices, because patient health could substantially benefit if we do so,” the authors conclude.

Source: Canadian Medical Association Journal

Doctor talking with a patient photo by shutterstock.

MDs Modeling Healthy Behaviors Can Impact Patients

Rick Nauert PhD

Rick Nauert, PhDDr. Rick Nauert has over 25 years experience in clinical, administrative and academic healthcare. He is currently an associate professor for Rocky Mountain University of Health Professionals doctoral program in health promotion and wellness. Dr. Nauert began his career as a clinical physical therapist and served as a regional manager for a publicly traded multidisciplinary rehabilitation agency for 12 years. He has masters degrees in health-fitness management and healthcare administration and a doctoral degree from The University of Texas at Austin focused on health care informatics, health administration, health education and health policy. His research efforts included the area of telehealth with a specialty in disease management.

APA Reference
Nauert PhD, R. (2018). MDs Modeling Healthy Behaviors Can Impact Patients. Psych Central. Retrieved on January 24, 2019, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 Aug 2018
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 Aug 2018
Published on Psych All rights reserved.