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Dr Lai is an occupational therapist by training. 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.  

Frank has been working in the Northumbria University from 2021. He had worked as the Assistant Professor and in-charge of the Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR) and Mixed Reality (MR) laboratory in the PolyU. Before took up his academic post, he had worked in the Hospital Authority (HA) of Hong Kong as frontline senior occupational therapist and allied health training officer for nearly twenty years. He has solid experience in different healthcare and social care settings over the world including teaching, clinical service, clinical research and administration that covered field of psychiatric and physical rehabilitation. His records of publications and international collaboration projects covered various important dimensions in rehabilitation sciences such as vocational rehabilitation, geri-orthopaedic rehabilitation, wheelchair & seating, amputation rehabilitation, home safety and fall prevention, executive functioning, dementia, cognitive screening, caregiving, and rehabilitation technology. His international background and experience support organisations’ process and resources management, service planning and development, and programme evaluation.

As the scholar interested with cognitive science and dementia community, Frank’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 caregivers. He conducts research on neuromodulation for older people with dementia and MCI; applies VR, AR and Artificial Intelligence (AI) for earlier cognitive screening and training; develop mobile apps for executive function training; organizes intergeneration public education for dementia care. Another research direction is, through dementia care, to apply design thinking in facilitating the intergenerational care and development of moral reasoning, empathy, social responsibility, and social innovation for the prosocial behaviour and positive youth development.  

Currently, Frank is the trustee of a charity organisation in support of the population facing social inequality in Newcastle and he is an honorary advisor of an older Chinese people network of the Northeast of the United Kingdom. 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 Hong Kong community. He is also the advisor of a local NGO on a social innovation intergenerational care 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
  • A Health App for Post-Pandemic Years (HAPPY) for people with physiological and psychosocial distress during the post-pandemic era: Protocol for a randomized controlled trial, Liu, J., Man, D., Lai, F., Cheung, T., Cheung, A., Cheung, D., Choi, T., Fong, G., Kwan, R., Lam, S., Ng, V., Wong, H., Yang, L., Shum, D. 2023, In: Digital Health
  • The association between satisfaction with life and anxiety symptoms among Chinese elderly: a moderated mediation analysis, Lai, C., Chen, L., Lai, F., Fung, A., Ng, S. 14 Dec 2023, In: BMC Geriatrics
  • 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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