Abstract Background People face varying obstacles when interacting with health information in their everyday lives. Objectives This study aims to examine the applicability of a multidimensional Everyday Health Information Literacy (EHIL) screening tool in detecting people with challenges in accessing, understanding, evaluating and using health information in everyday situations. Methods Previously collected EHIL screening tool data from Finnish upper secondary school students (n = 217), Finnish young men (n = 1450), Finnish adults with an increased risk for metabolic syndrome (n = 559) and Namibian university students (n = 271) were reanalysed to examine the factorial structure of the tool and to compare the groups. Statistical analyses included exploratory factor analyses, calculation of mean factor scores and one-way analysis of variance. Results A three factor structure (‘awareness’, ‘access’, ‘assessment’) for the screening tool was supported based on the Finnish samples. However, the Namibian data did not follow a similar structure. Significant differences in groupwise factor scores were discovered. Discussion The findings suggest that the multidimensional EHIL screening tool can be used in pointing out areas where individuals or groups may need support. Conclusion The tool may be useful to health information and library services workers when counselling or educating the public.