Linda Li

Senior Research Scientist of Clinical Epidemiology, BSc(PT), MSc, PhD


  • Harold Robinson Chair / Arthritis Society Chair in Arthritic Diseases
  • Associate Professor, Department of Physical Therapy, University of British Columbia

Research Interests

  • Models of care in the management of arthritis
  • Development and evaluation of knowledge translation strategies

Dr. Linda Li is an Associate Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy, University of British Columbia. In 2006, she was the first rehabilitation professional appointed as Harold Robinson / Arthritis Society Chair in Arthritic Diseases.

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She completed her Bachelor of Science in Physiotherapy at McGill University and Master’s of Science at the University of Western Ontario. She earned a Doctorate in Clinical Epidemiology at the University of Toronto in 2004. Two years later, she completed a CIHR-funded Post-doctoral Fellowship in knowledge translation at the Ottawa Health Research Institute.


Dr. Li’s research and academic activities focus in two areas: models of care in the management of arthritis, and the development and evaluation of knowledge translation strategies. Her research centres on assessing health service delivery models, and understanding and facilitating the use of evidence by health professionals and patients. Areas of methodological expertise include clinical epidemiology, knowledge translation, clinical trials, and survey design.


As the lead investigator of a randomized controlled trial on the effectiveness of Primary Therapist Model, Dr. Li examined the value of extended roles of physiotherapists and occupational therapists in the management of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). The results showed that patients with RA can achieve better clinical outcomes after treatment from a rheumatology-trained primary therapist as compared to a physical therapy and/or occupational therapy generalist. Her research has challenged the thinking around traditional roles of rehabilitation therapists and the discipline-specific model in arthritis care.


  1. Davis JC, Hsu CL, Brasher P, Li LC, Khan KM, Sykes J, Skelton D, Liu-Ambrose T. Can the Otago falls prevention program be delivered by video? A feasibility study. BMJ Open Sport and Exercise Medicine. (Accepted) 2015.
  2. Gianola S, Castellini G, Agostini M, Bolotta R, Corbetta D, Frigerio P, Gasparini M, Gozzer P, Guariento E, Li LC, Pecoraro V, Sirtori V, Turolla A, Andreano A, Moja L. Reporting of rehabilitation intervention for low back pain in randomized controlled trials: Is the treatment fully replicable? Spine. (Accepted) 2015.
  3. Feehan L, Leung A, Goldsmith C, Li LC. Comparison of Sensewear Mini and Actigraph GT3X accelerometer measures of sedentary and light intensity physical activities in a controlled laboratory and free-living conditions. Physiotherapy Canada. (In-press) 2015.
  4. Westby MD, Klemm A, Li LC, Jones CA. Emerging role of quality indicators in physical therapist practice and health services delivery. [E-pub ahead of print on June 18, 2015. PMID: 26089040] Physical Therapy. 96:90-100, 2016.
  5. Ratzlaff C, Zhang C, Korzan J, Josey L, Wong H, Cibere J, Prlic HM, Kopec JA, Esdaile JM, Li LC, Barber M, Forster BB. The validity of a non-radiologist reader in identifying CAM and pincer femoroacetabular impingement (FAI) using plain radiography. Proposed venue: Rheumatology International. [Epub ahead of print. DOI: 10.1007/s00296-015-3361-7]. 2015.
  6. Zhang C, Li LC, Forster BB, Gilbart M, Kopec JA, Ratzlaff C, Esdaile, JM. Femoroacetabular impingement and osteoarthritis of the hips: What primary care providers need to know? Canadian Family Physician. 61(12):1055-60; 2015.
  7. Townsend AF, Leese J, Adam PM, McDonald M, Li LC, Kerr S, Backman CL. E-Health, participatory medicine and ethical care: A focus group study of patients and health care provider’s use of e-health technologies. Journal of Medical Internet Research. 17(6):e155, 2015.
  8. Zong JY, Leese J, Klemm A, Memetovic J, Esdaile JM, Li LC. Rheumatologists’ views and perceived barriers to using patients decision aids in clinical practice. Arthritis Care & Research. 67(10):1463-70, 2015.
  9. Clayton C, Feehan L, Goldsmith CH, Miller WC, Grewal N, Ye J, Yoo JY, Li LC. Feasibility and preliminary efficacy of a physical activity counselling intervention using Fitbit in people with knee osteoarthritis: the TRACK-OA study protocol. Pilot and Feasibility Studies. 1:30, 2015.
  10. Agha A, Liu-Ambrose TYL, Backman CL, Li LC. Understanding the experiences of rural community-dwelling older adults in using a new DVD-delivered Otago exercise program. Interactive Journal of Medical Research. 4(3):e17, 2015.
  11. Davis JC, Bryan S, Best JR, Li LC, Hsu CL, Gomez C, Vertes K, Liu-Ambrose T. Mobility predicts change in older adults’ health-related quality of life: Evidence from a Vancouver Falls Prevention prospective cohort study. Health and Quality of Life Outcomes. 13(1):101, 2015.
  12. Davis JC, Bryan S, Li LC, Hsu L, Gomez C, Vertes K, Liu-Ambrose T. Mobility and cognition are associated with wellbeing and health related quality of life. BMC Geriatrics. 15(1):75, 2015.
  13. Davis JC, Bryan S, Best JR, Li LC, Hsu CL, Gomez C, Vertes K, Liu-Ambrose T. Mobility is a key predictor of changes in well-being among older adults who experience falls: Evidence from the Vancouver Falls Prevention Clinic Cohort. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. 96(9):1634-1640, 2015.
  14. Toupin-April K, Barton J, Fraenkel L, Li LC, Grandpierre V, Guillemin F, Rader T, Stacey C, Légaré F, Jull J, Petkovic J, Scholte-Voshaar M, Welch V, Lyddiatt A, Hofstetter C, De Wit M, March L, Meade T, Christensen R, Gaujoux-Viala C, Suarez-Almazor ME, Boonen A, Pohl C, Martin R, Tugwell P. Development of a draft core set of domains for measuring shared decision making in osteoarthritis: An OMERACT working group on shared decision making. Journal of Rheumatology. 42(12):2442-2447, 2015.
  15. Tatla, SK, Shirzad N, Hoens AM, Li LC, Lohse KR, Holsti L, Virgi-Babul N, van der Loos HFM. Therapists’ perception of technology use in upper limb rehabilitation. Journal of Medical Internet Research: Serious Game. 3(1):e2, 2015.
  16. Ezzat AM, MacPherson K, Leese J, Li LC. The effectiveness of interventions to increase exercise adherence in people with arthritis: A systematic review. Musculoskeletal Care. 13:1-18, 2015.
  17. Guillemin F, Carruthers E, Li LC. Determinants of MSK health and disability – Social determinants of inequities in MSK health. Ballière’s Best Practice & Research Clinical Rheumatology. 28(3):411-433, 2014.
  18. Speerin R, Slater H, Li LC, Moore K, Chan M, Dreinhofer K, Ebeling PR, Willcock S, Briggs AM. Moving from evidence to practice: Models of care for the prevention and management of musculoskeletal conditions. Ballière’s Best Practice & Research Clinical Rheumatology. 28(3):479-515, 2014.
  19. Bansback N, Li LC, Lynd L, Bryan S. Development and preliminary user testing of the DCIDA (Dynamic Computer Interactive Decision Application) for ‘nudging’ patients using decision aids towards high quality decisions. BMC Medical Informatics and Decision Making. 14(1):62, 2014.
  20. Carruthers EC, Rogers P, Backman C, Goldsmith CH, Gignac M, Marra C, Li LC, Esdaile JM, Lacaille D. Employment and Arthritis: Making it Work” A randomized controlled trial evaluating an online program to help people with inflammatory arthritis maintain employment (Study Protocol). BMC Medical Informatics and Decision Making. 14(1):59, 2014.