The Effects of Homelessness on Human Psychology

by scase3 on Mars 14, 2014 - 9:13pm

Everyone knows that homelessness is a problem in urban areas of the United States.  There is often studies done on the rate of homelessness and how they survive but a new study has brought a new side to problems of homeless veterans.  No one has ever really studied the dangers and side effects of living homeless on the psyche of veterans.  The study in this article was carried out through the VA Homeless Operations Management and Evaluation System (HOMES) which is an online program that keeps track of homeless veterans along with the tracking of non-veteran homeless people.   The results showed that the veterans were the least likely to have any psychiatric disorders.  The only catch was that homeless veterans had a very high amount of substance abuse. 


The main purpose of this article was to monitor and find problems affecting homeless people and veterans in particular.  For this to be a legitimate study, the creators had to make multiple assumptions.  First of all, they had to assume that the program they were using was regularly updated and maintained by the veterans.  This could be difficult because the homeless don’t always have access to a computer.  The second assumption that was needed was that the homeless would stay homeless throughout the experiment.  The whole experiment would become invalid on homeless people if the group studied had a large gain in fortune and were able to get off of the streets.  The last assumption is that none of the homeless subjects that were kept track of had any psychological problems before the study started.  If you make an experiment to test for psychiatric disorders and the group studied already has these problems, the experiment will be completely pointless.



Tsai, J. Kasprow, W.J. Rosenheck, R.A. (2013, December).  Latent Homeless Risk Profiles of a National Sample of Homeless Veterans and Their Relation to Program Referral and Admission Patterns. American Journal of Public Health. 103(2), s239-s2447

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