Views of Bedouin physicians and nurses on nursing as a profession in Israel: There is more to strive for

Rasmiya Abu Rabia, Tova Hendel, Ilya Kagan*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Bedouin society poses challenges to attempts at modernization. Great efforts are being made to expand the number of nurses coming from the Bedouin population. This cross-sectional study among 201 Bedouin nurses and physicians from southern Israel examined differences in their views on nursing as a profession and its relationship to the working environment, using a self-administered questionnaire. Bedouin physicians demonstrated less positive attitudes towards the nursing profession than did nurses, but perceived the nursing work environment more positively. Compared to nurses, physicians ranked both nurses’ involvement in policy practice and their clinical contribution to quality care lower, but scored nurses’ dependence on physicians’ orders higher. They also ranked teamwork and professional nursing development higher, and the autonomy of nurses lower. In conclusion, the perception of nursing as a profession in Bedouin society is linked to cultural fundamentals, gender, and the social status of women. Managers of multicultural teams, especially those including Bedouin-origin healthcare workers, should be aware of the effect of cultural background and should take care to address social disparities and eliminate differences in perspectives.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)498-505
Number of pages8
JournalNursing and Health Sciences
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2021


  • Bedouin nurses
  • Bedouin physicians
  • autonomy
  • cross-sectional studies
  • culture
  • gender
  • teamwork
  • work environment


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