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Dr Frank Lai

Assistant Professor

Department: Social Work, Education and Community Wellbeing

- Assistant Professor, Occupational Therapy, Dept. Social Work, Education & Community Wellbeing, Faculty of Health and Life Sciences, The Northumbria University.

- Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA)

- Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) Registered Occupational Therapist 

Frank Lai

Dr Lai is a scientist from Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) China.

He received BSc in Occupational Therapy from The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU), then awarded MSc Health Care in Occupational Therapy and obtained his PhD from the PolyU. He is the holder of the Diploma of Epidemiology & Applied Statistics, and the Diploma of Occupational Safety & Health.  

He had been working in the Hong Kong Polytechnic University (with QS ranking 75) and Hospital Authority (HA) of Hong Kong for more than twenty years and had been working as Allied Health Training Officer in HA. He has ample experience in teaching, clinical service, research and administration that covered field of psychiatric and physical rehabilitation in Hong Kong and Mainland China. Most importantly, he has been working actively in clinical research throughout these decades. His records of publications and conference presentations covered various important dimensions in rehabilitation sciences such as vocational rehabilitation, geri-orthopaedic rehabilitation, wheelchair & seating, amputation rehabilitation, home safety and fall prevention, problem solving style of substance abusers, executive functioning, dementia, cognitive screening, blood-based biomarkers, application of Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) and caregivers' research.

In recent years, Dr Lai’s research interest geared towards two directions. The first is on the implementation of holistic dementia care, which aimed not only to people with dementia but also to their care-givers. He conducts research on neuro-modulation for older people with dementia and MCI; applies VR, AR and AI for earlier cognitive screening and training; organizes public education, especially on public health education for dementia care. His second research direction is on the application of design thinking to facilitate the growth of moral reasoning, empathy, social responsibility, intergenerational care, and social innovation for the prosocial behavior and positive youth and adolescence development.  

In Newcastle of the UK, Dr Lai is one of the Trustees of a local NGO and as an advisor for another NGO for older people services. In Hong Kong, he is the Council Members of the Chinese Dementia Research Association and is one of the advisors of the “Dementia Care Link”  which is a co-joint community volunteer training project between HA and various district-based NGOs in the community. He is also the advisor of a local NGO on a social innovation development program for positive youth development “Youth Impact Award, YIAA” . 

With the support from HKSAR Governmental funding, Dr Lai developed a web-based platform 攜手跨障礙-公眾教育平台“” for public education. Moreover, with the support from the Fund of Better Living of the Innovation & Technology Committee of the HKSAR, Dr Lai and his team develop a cognitive training apps for older people "小城大事腦力挑戰 Brain Challenge for Major Events in a Small Town" 


  • Please visit the Pure Research Information Portal for further information
  • Individualized and Ecological Analyses of the Needs of Family Caregivers of Older Adults with Dementia: The Phenomenological Approach., Lai, F. 20 Dec 2022, In: Journal of Rehabilitation
  • Risks and Mitigating Factors in Psychosocial Adjustment of Spousal Caregivers of People with Dementia, Lai, F., Yan, E., Tsui, W., Yu, K., Chan, D., Wong, M., Wong, S., Lai, C. 30 Jun 2022, In: Journal of Rehabilitation
  • Information Communication Technology as Instrumental Activities of Daily Living for Aging-in-Place in Chinese Older Adults With and Without Cognitive Impairment: The Validation Study of Advanced Instrumental Activities of Daily Living Scale, Lai, F., Tong, A., Fung, A., Yu, K., Wong, S., Lai, C., Man, D. 9 Mar 2022, In: Frontiers in Neurology
  • Effects of non-invasive brain stimulation in multiple sclerosis: systematic review and meta-analysis, Kan, R., Xu, G., Shu, K., Lai, F., Kranz, G., Kranz, G. 1 Jan 2022, In: Therapeutic Advances in Chronic Disease
  • Effects of traditional Cantonese opera songs on Cantonese-speaking, community-dwelling older adults’ cognitive and psychological function, well-being, and health, Man, D., Lai, F., Yu, E., Lee, G. 19 May 2022, In: Aging and Mental Health

  • Please visit the Pure Research Information Portal for further information
  • Publication Peer-review: Experimental Aging Research (Journal) 2021
  • Publication Peer-review: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (Journal) 2021
  • Publication Peer-review: Applied Research in Quality of Life (Journal) 2020
  • Publication Peer-review: Dementia (Journal) 2020
  • Invited talk: International HealthTech Forum 2021 2020

  • Education July 04 2022
  • Philosophy PhD May 15 2017
  • Management Diploma May 31 2007
  • Health MSc November 21 2001
  • Statistics Diploma August 12 1998
  • Occupational Therapy BSc October 26 1995
  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA) FHEA 2022
  • Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) Registered HCPC 2021
  • Professional Member Royal College of Occupational Therapists 2021
  • Member of The Alzheimer's Association International Society to Advance Alzheimer's Research and Treatment (ISTAART) ISTAART 2020
  • Hong Kong Registered Occupational Therapist HKROT 1995

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