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Research Faculty

William Ho Cheung LI

Dr William LI is currently an Associate Professor and the Director of Doctor of Nursing Programme at the School of Nursing, the University of Hong Kong. He has a strong research interest in the field of child and adolescent care, and has much skill and knowledge in developing, validating and testing the psychometric properties of instruments for children.

Specifically, Dr William Li’s research interests focus on two distinct areas. The first research area involves providing physical and psychological interventions to those children required hospitalization or surgery, children with cancer and children surviving from cancer. In particular, Dr Li conducted the first study on exploring the ways of coping and coping strategies used by Hong Kong Chinese children hospitalized with cancer, which is an essential pre-requisite for designing appropriate psycho-educational interventions to ease the burden of cancer treatment. The findings increase knowledge and awareness of health-care professionals of the impact of socio-cultural factors on the coping of children. Additionally, Dr Li conducted the 1st RCT study on integrating the adventure-based training and health education program in promoting regular physical activity for childhood cancer survivors, which is essential for their physical and psychological well-being, and consequently enhancing their quality of life.

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The second research area involves promoting smoking cessation to the youth, helping smokers with chronic diseases, such as cancer and diabetic patients, quit smoking. Dr Li had been leading the smoking cessation team at the School of Nursing since 2012. His major roles are to supervise and monitor the performance of team members, and provide supervision and guidance for the team members on research methodology, report and academic paper writing, and grant application for research projects.

Dr Li conducted the 1st RCT to help smokers who attended emergency departments to quit smoking. Dr Li’s research involves testing the effectiveness of various smoking cessation interventions, which generates new knowledge and evidence and have the greatest potential to effectively implement routinely in clinical and community settings, thus have major clinical and public health implications. Most importantly, the results provide support for the development of clinical practice guidelines, motivate more healthcare professionals and other caregivers, such as the family members of smokers, to routinely promote smoking cessation to smokers in clinical and community settings, and prompt more researchers to design and evaluate other brief smoking cessation programmes.

Dr Li is actively collaborating with local and international renowned scholars to conduct research, teaching, and knowledge exchange. Up to 2016, Dr Li, as the Principal Investigator, has obtained six external peer-reviewed competitive research grants (5 HMRF and 1 HCPF) and more than 15 grants from both external and internal funding sources. Additionally, Dr Li has published more than 80 peer reviewed international journal articles with high impact factors and most of these publications are in the upper 1/3 of the nursing and health-related categories of the Journal Citation Reports in ISI Web of Knowledge, three scholarly books, 9 book chapters and over 75 international conference papers.

Funding Scheme Project Title Approved Amount (HK$)
Tobacco Control Office,
Department of Health
Provision of Service of a Youth Quitline Programme for Youth Smokers under the Department of Health (2013-2018) 4,290,000
Health and Medical Research Fund

Helping in-patients to quit smoking by understanding their risk perception, behaviour, and attitudes related to smoking

Health Care Promotion Fund Promoting smoking cessation for female smokers in Hong Kong through training female youth smoking cessation and reduction ambassadors 500,000
Health and Medical Research Fund Effectiveness of a brief, self-determination intervention for smoking cessation (immediate or progressive) among people attending emergency departments: a randomised controlled trial 1,000,000
Health and Medical Research Fund Effectiveness of an integrated adventure-based training and health education programme in promoting the adoption and maintenance of regular physical activity among childhood cancer survivors 726,383
Health and Medical Research Fund Helping cancer patients quit smoking by improving their risk communication: a randomized controlled trial 1,000,000
  1. Li WH*, Ho KY, Wang MP, Cheung DY, Lam KK, Xia W, Cheung KY, Wong CK, Chan SS, Lam TH. Effectiveness of a brief self-determination theory–based smoking cessation intervention for smokers at emergency departments in Hong Kong: a randomized clinical trial. JAMA Internal Medicine. 2020 Feb 1;180(2):206-14. Available from: doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2019.5176
  2. Cheung AT, Li WH*, Ho KY, Lam KK, Ho LL, Chiu SY, Chan GC, Chung JO. Efficacy of musical training on psychological outcomes and quality of life in Chinese pediatric brain tumor survivors. Psycho‐oncology. 2019 Jan;28(1):174-80. Available from: doi:10.1002/pon.4929
  3. Li WH*, Ho KY, Lam KK, Lam HS, Chui SY, Chan GC, Cheung AT, Ho LL, Chung OK. Adventure-based training to promote physical activity and reduce fatigue among childhood cancer survivors: a randomized controlled trial. International Journal of Nursing Studies. 2018 Jul;83:65-74. Available from: doi:10.1016/j.ijnurstu.2018.04.007
  4. Li WH*, Wang MP, Ho KY, Lam KK, Cheung DY, Cheung YT, Lam TH, Sophia SC. Helping cancer patients quit smoking using brief advice based on risk communication: a randomized controlled trial. Scientific Reports. 2018 Feb 9;8:1-9.Available from: doi:10.1038/s41598-018-21207-1
  5. Li WH*, Chan SS, Wan ZS, Wang MP, Ho KY, Lam TH. Development of a community-based network to promote smoking cessation among female smokers in Hong Kong. BMC Public Health. 2017 Apr 11;17:311. Available from: doi:10.1186/s12889-017-4213-z
  6. Li WH*, Wang MP, Lam TH, Cheung YT, Cheung DY, Suen YN, Ho KY, Tan KC, Sophia SC. Brief intervention to promote smoking cessation and improve glycemic control in smokers with type 2 diabetes: a randomized controlled trial. Scientific Reports. 2017 Apr 5;7:45902. Available from: doi:10.1038/srep45902
  7. Li WH*, Chan SS, Wang MP, Ho KY, Cheung YT, Chan VW, Lam TH. An evaluation of the youth quitline service young Hong Kong smokers. Journal of Adolescent Health. 2017 May;60(5):584-91. Available from: doi:10.1016/j.jadohealth.2016.11.022
  8. Jackson D, Hutchinson M, Barnason S, Li WH, Mannix J, Neville S, Piper D, Power T, Smith GD, Usher K. Towards international consensus on patient harm: perspectives on pressure injury policy. Journal of Nursing Management. 2016 May 23;24(7):902-14. Available from: doi:10.1111/jonm.12396
  9. Coffey A, McCarthy G, Weathers E, Friedman MI, Gallo K, Ehrenfeld M, Chan S, Li WH, Poletti P, Zanotti R, Molloy DW. Nurses' knowledge of advance directives and perceived confidence in end‐of‐life care: a cross‐sectional study in five countries. International Journal of Nursing Practice. 2016 Jan 28;22(3):247-57. Available from: doi:10.1111/ijn.12417
  10. Li WH*, Chung JO, Ho KY, Kwok BM. Play interventions to reduce anxiety and negative emotions in hospitalized children. BMC Pediatrics. 2016 Mar 11;16:36. Available from: doi:10.1186/s12887-016-0570-5
  11. Li HW*, Chung OK, Ho KY, Chiu SY, Lopez V. Effectiveness of an integrated adventure‐based training and health education program in promoting regular physical activity among childhood cancer survivors. Psycho‐Oncology. 2013 Jun 4;22(11):2601-10. Available from: doi:10.1002/pon.3326
  12. Li HW*, Williams PD, Williams AR, Chung JO, Chiu SY, Lopez V. Confirmatory factor analysis of the Chinese version of the Pediatric Quality-of-Life Inventory cancer module. Cancer Nursing. 2013 Nov;36(6):E66-72.. Available from: doi:10.1097/NCC.0b013e318276e056
  13. Li WH*, Chung JO, Ho EK. Effectiveness of an adventure-based training programme in promoting the psychological well-being of primary schoolchildren. Journal of Health Psychology. 2012 Dec 7;18(11):1478-92. Available from: doi:10.1177/1359105312465102
  14. Li WH*, Williams PD, Lopez V, Chung JO, Chiu SY. Relationships among therapy-related symptoms, depressive symptoms, and quality of life in Chinese children hospitalized with cancer: an exploratory study. Cancer Nursing. 2013 Sep;36(5):346-54. Available from: doi:10.1097/NCC.0b013e31824062ec
  • Journal of Clinical Nursing
  • Cancer Nursing
  • Journal of Pediatric Oncology Nursing

Within University

  • Chair, Teaching and Learning Committee (Post-graduate Programme)
  • Programme Director, Doctor of Nursing Programme,
  • Smoking Cessation Team Supervisor

Professional Societies

  • Chair, Hong Kong Society for Nursing Education
  • Vice-President, Hong Kong College of Education and Research
  • Member of the Pi Iota Chapter of the Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing, Royal College of Nursing, and International Conference on Cancer Nursing
  • 2013
Serena Yang Fellowship in Nursing
  • 2010
Teaching Medals, Li Ka Shing Faculty of Medicine, the University of Hong Kong
  • 2009
Excellent paper of 2009 Shanghai International Nursing Conference (SHINC) Shanghai Nursing Association
  • 2008
Best Poster Presentation Award, Joint Annual Scientific Meeting for Paediatricians and Paediatric Nurses. The Hong Kong Paediatric Society & Hong Kong Paediatric Nurses Associated Ltd.
  • 2007
Best Oral Presentation Award, Evidence-Based Practice in Nursing: Paradigms and Dialogue, 19-21 April 2007 Hong Kong
  • 2006
Obtain an “Outstanding Research Award: Research Student” offered by Pi Iota Chapter Scholarship from Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing
  • 2005
Obtain an “Outstanding Research Award: Research Student” offered by Pi Iota Chapter Scholarship from Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing
  • 2004
Obtain a “New Researcher Award (Postgraduate) 2003/04” The Chinese University of Hong Kong