Measuring Mental Health Provider-Based Stigma: Development and Initial Psychometric Testing of a Self-Assessment Instrument – 2018-01

This article describes the development and initial psychometric testing of the Mental Health Provider Self-Assessment of Stigma Scale (MHPSASS), a 20-item instrument crafted in reflection of Charles’ (Social Work in Mental Health 11:360–375, 2013) empirically derived, experience-based, five-themed model of provider stigmatization. Following model and item review by construct experts, 220 mental health service providers in Virginia’s public mental health centers and in-patient facilities completed the survey package. Results indicate the refined MHPSASS is a reliable measure of provider-based stigma with promising face and content validity. However, rather than they hypothesized five-factors, analysis indicates a four-factor solution, a key finding signaling a discrepancy between what providers endorse and what clients’ experience. Notably absent from the MHPSASS’ were items related to blame and shame, in contrast to the experience of clients and families. Further refinement is indicated, particularly reconsideration of blame and shame items due to their practical and theoretical significance.

Jennifer L. K. Charles, Kia J. Bentley
Community Mental Health Journal, January 2018