Now Dr. Li is the one people come to with questions.
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Explore This IssueJanuary 2016
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Her research has focused on understanding the help-seeking experience of people with arthritis and evaluating digital media interventions designed to improve arthritis management. Her work has earned her multiple awards, including Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) New Investigator, an ACR Rheumatology Research Foundation Health Professional New Investigator Award and a Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research Career Investigator Award.
She earned her doctorate in clinical epidemiology at the University of Toronto in 2004 and two years later finished a CIHR-funded post-doctoral fellowship in knowledge translation at the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute.
‘We know that patients who are engaged in making informed decisions with their health professionals have better outcomes. This is why I am interested in developing interventions that promote shared decision making.’ —Linda Li, BSc (PT), MSc, PhD
Q: What does an award from your peers mean?
A: It really means a lot for one’s career. I joined this organization when I was in training. It feels like I grew up in a family, and now I’m recognized. It’s a wonderful feeling.
Q: What keeps you motivated in the field?
A: What has been learned from rheumatology research has changed the way arthritis is managed. With earlier diagnosis and treatment, and advanced approaches to support patient self-management, outcomes of patients today are much better than 20 years ago. Yes, the challenge is something that drew me in, and it’s interesting and it keeps me going. Yet the amazing accomplishments in this field make it stay gratifying. I wouldn’t think anybody would want to go anywhere else.
Q: Shared-decision making with patients has been something you’ve focused on. Why?
A: One thing we found from interviewing patients in the first years after their diagnosis with rheumatoid arthritis was that people felt uncertain about using medications. Some didn’t feel that the available information was user friendly. That sense of uncertainty sometimes makes people make a decision without their eyes open or delays a decision. Meanwhile, they could have benefited from receiving the treatment. This is an obvious gap that health services researchers would like to tackle. We know that patients who are engaged in making informed decisions with their health professionals have better outcomes. This is why I am interested in developing interventions that promote shared decision making.
ARHP Graduate Student Award
Rina Sobel Fox, MS, MPH, San Diego State University/University of California, San Diego, Joint Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology, San Diego