Critical Synthesis Package: Health Professional’s Attitude Towards the Homeless Inventory (HPATHI)

Date of Review: December, 2019

This resource describes the Health Professional’s Attitude Towards the Homeless Inventory (HPATHI), a 19-item survey to assess medical students’ and physicians’ attitudes toward the homeless, and their level of interest/confidence in delivering healthcare services to homeless populations. The Critical Analysis document in this resource presents objective information on this instrument’s strengths and weaknesses. While the HPATHI does have some desirable psychometric properties (e.g. high internal consistency), it also has several notable drawbacks, including a lack of validity evidence in the published research literature. Educators or researchers who are interested in alternative instruments may consider the 11-item Attitudes Towards Homelessness Inventory (ATHI), as well as surveys evaluating clinicians’ attitudes toward underserved populations. Nevertheless, the HPATHI may be of interest to those who want to assess clinicians’ attitudes toward caring for the homeless, so long as they are knowledgeable about the potential weaknesses of this instrument. — Dave Liss, PhD, NCEAS