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Academic Staff

Dr Li Yan
PolyU Scholars Hub

Dr Yan LI

Assistant Professor (Presidential Young Scholar)


Yan is an Assistant Professor at the School of Nursing, the Hong Kong Polytechnic University. She completed her postdoctoral training at Florence Nightingale Faculty of Nursing, Midwifery, and Palliative care, King's College London, United Kingdom from 2019-2020. Dr Li is a registered nurse with over 10 years of experience, and she is an active nurse researcher. Her research interest is spinal cord injury rehabilitation, psychosocial interventions, and mental health promotion. Her work was supported by Prof Ida Martinson Fund and King’s College London Global Research Grant. She has recently been awarded the Hong Kong Government Health and Medical Research Fund Research Fellowship to continue her research work and contribution towards local service innovation and research development in the area of mental health within spinal cord injury community rehabilitation. Dr Li has published over 30 peer-reviewed journal articles and she has served as a reviewer for the Journal of Nursing Scholarship, Disability and Rehabilitation, International Journal of Interprofessional Care, BMC geriatrics, Spinal Cord and Journal of Spine surgery. Dr Li has been mentor for postdoctoral research fellow, PhD students and Mphil students, research assistants. Dr Li has established the Digital Preventive Healthcare Research Group Dr Li is currently accepting highly motivated PhD students, interested candidates can please send an email (with CV and 1-2 first author publications) to Dr Li.  


Projects as Principal Investigator

  • [AI-driven Vaccine Communicator智能疫苗助理]: The impact of a Web-based psychoeducation programme with a motivational AI-based digital assistant on Covid-19 vaccine hesitancy in Hong Kong’s population. Principal Investigator (2021-2025), and this is one of the five studies under the project “A community-based participatory research approach to reduce the COVID-19 risk in Hong Kong: developing and testing social and behavioural interventions:” led by Prof Molasiotis Grant source: Health and Medical Research Fund, FHB, Commissioned Research on the Novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19).
  • Effects of a Physical-Psychological Integrative (PPI) intervention on Physical inactivity, Depression and Chronic pain for Community-Dwelling Spinal Cord Injury Survivors: A Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial; Health and Medical Research Fund—Research Fellowship Scheme. Principal Investigator, 01/Sep/2021- 01/Sep/2023. 
  • Effects of caregiver-administrated acupressure intervention for community-dwelling spinal cord injury survivors with constipation: A randomized controlled trial; 穴位按壓對居於社區的脊髓損傷患者便秘的成效研究: 一項隨機對照試驗. Hong Kong Government Chinese Medicine Development Fund;  Principal Investigator, 1 April 2022- 31/March 2024. 
  • Regular Sleep, Healthy Future - Promoting Sleep Health among College Students and Healthcare Professionals. Principal Investigator, September 1, 2021 – June 30, 2022,  UGC Shanghai-Hong Kong University Alliance (SHUA) Open Bid Funding.
  • Greater Bay Area Nursing Forum: From Research to Clinical Practice Cum Workshop on Research Methods Training in Nursing. Principal Investigator, November 2021,  UGC Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao University Alliance (GHMUA) Open Bid Funding.
  • Global Research Grant. Personal Research Development Fund,  King's College London
  • Effectiveness of peer-delivered interventions for people with severe mental illness: A systematic review. PI,  Professor Ida Martinson Fund, EAFONS


Projects as co-investigators

  • Learning to learn reflectively: using individual serial concept maps to enhance reflective thinking, reduce the theory-practice gap and improve learning self-efficacy, academic-related stress and academic achievement in mental health nursing students. Co-investigator. LTC projects, PolyU. 
  • Evaluation of a 25-day home-based, multisensory cognitive stimulation program for people with dementia and their family caregivers. Co-investigator. Mr Ma Kam Wah. 
  • Reducing Stigma and Discrimination: Evaluation of England's Time to Change programme. Project participation, Institute of Psychiatry, King's College London.

Research Interests

  • Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation
  • Psychosocial interventions (e.g., coping-based, mindfulness-based, Motivational interviewing, psychoeducation)
  • Mental Health Promotion
  • Technologies (e.g., AI-based, web-based, chatbot) in healthcare interventions

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