Ben Novis was born in Pretoria, South Africa where he was active in Habonim. He attended Pretoria University Medical School and then did post-graduate studies in London. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians in London.
After working in various hospitals in London, Ben worked at Groote Schuur Hospital in Cape Town for six years. He founded and served as Head of the Gastroenterology Unit at Meir Hospital in Kfar Saba after he came on aliyah in 1976 and remained in that position for 30 years. Then he began working at Tel Hashomer Hospital, first on staff and later as a volunteer. He was also Professor of Medicine at Tel Aviv University.
Ben served as President and Honorary Fellow of the Israel Gastroenterological Society and on the board of the Ethics Committee of the European and the World Societies of Gastroenterology.
His main volunteer activity has been with Hod Ve-Hadar Masorti Synagogue, of which he has been an active member since it was established and has been chairman a number of times.
He is married to Carol and they have three children and eight lovely grandchildren.