Our People

Academic Staff

Prof. Roger Yat-nork CHUNG


BA (Johns Hopkins), MHS (Johns Hopkins), PhD (HKU)

Assistant Professor

Academic Appointments

  • Associate Director, CUHK Institute of Health Equity

  • Research Fellow  (by courtesy), CUHK Institute of Ageing

  • International Health Policy Fellow, National Academy of Medicine (NAM), USA


Dr. Chung joined the School of Public Health and Primary Care (SPHPC) of the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) in 2011. Using the lens of biomedical ethics and justice, his research aims to empirically inquire into the social determinants of health inequalities (including poverty and health, migrants’ health, rare diseases patients’ health), as well as aging‐related issues on multimorbidity and long‐term/end‐of‐life care, and to utilize such evidence to inform health services and policy, domestically and beyond.

Dr. Chung is the founding Associate Director of the CUHK Institute of Health Equity established in January 2020 under the co‐directorship of Sir Prof Michael Marmot, Prof Eng‐Kiong Yeoh, and Prof Jean Woo. He is also a founding member of the Centre for Health Systems and Policy Research, a founding member of the Research Centre for Migration and Mobility, an executive member of the Centre for Quality of Life, and Research Fellow (by courtesy) at the CHUK Institute of Ageing.

On an international level, Dr. Chung is the Vice Chair of the Public Health Global Challenge Steering Group of the Worldwide Universities Network (WUN), spearheading the direction of research and collaboration in public health for 23 international research universities in the world. In September 2018, Dr. Chung was elected the Inaugural National Academy of Medicine (NAM) International Health Policy Fellow by the prestigious NAM in the US, studying social determinants of healthy longevity. Moreover, he has served in various official consultation committees of the Hong Kong Government, including the Domestic Health Accounts and Thematic Household Survey of the Food and Health Bureau, and has been involved in two Government commissioned projects on elderly/end‐of‐life care and healthcare resource allocation exercise. He was a principal investigator of a Hospital Authority consultancy study on medical assistance programs and a commissioned study on rare diseases in Hong Kong. Dr. Chung’s research has also been featured as the cover story of CUHK Newsletter (Nov Issue #507). Dr. Chung has had numerous publications including 80+ academic articles in leading high‐impact peer‐reviewed journals, book chapters and consultation reports.

​Furthermore, he has been actively involved with University‐, College‐, Faculty‐ and School‐level services as well as external social services with considerable public impact – he is the Vice President of Hong Kong Life and Death Studies Association (香港生死學協會), a social enterprise integrating professional knowledge and ideas from a wide range of young professionals in innovating life and death education, advance care planning, long-term care and after‐death arrangements in Hong Kong; and he is a co‐host of the only “Life and Death Education” Radio Program in Hong Kong. In 2019, he co-edited a best-selling and award-winning book “What Life and Death Education Talks About” (《生死教育講呢啲》) . Apart from his academic life, he is also an award‐winning and celebrated recording artist/producer.

Dr. Chung obtained the Bachelor degree in Public Health from Johns Hopkins University and Master of Health Science from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in the US in 2005. He further received his Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree from the School of Public Health of the University of Hong Kong in 2011, with his study on the impact of socioeconomic development on population health, from which he also won the Presidential Award for Best Oral Presentation from the Hong Kong College of Community Medicine.

Research Interests

  • Health equity and social epidemiology

    • Social determinants of health

    • Socioeconomic disparity and gradient in health 

    • Socially disadvantaged and vulnerable populations (poverty and deprivation, migrants/ethnic minority, gender, and people with serious and chronic illness –rare diseases patients and terminally ill patients)

    • Public health ethics and justice

  • Aging‐related research

    • End‐of‐life and long‐term care

    • Multimorbidity

Recent Funded Research Projects 

  • Research Grants Council (RGC) General Research Fund (GRF):

    • Individual-level Income Poverty and Deprivation as Predictors of Health. A Longitudinal Cohort Study in Hong Kong, $1,156,984

    • Employment Conditions and Health among Female Foreign Domestic Workers in Hong Kong. A Cross-sectional Quantitative Survey, $889,984

  • Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship Development (SIE) Fund Task Force and CUHK Committee on Knowledge Transfer (KTC):

    • ​​A Concept Musical Drama on End-of-Life Care and Death Attitudes in Hong Kong, $400,000

  • Other grants:

    • Worldwide Universities Network (WUN) Research Development Fund. Health & Social Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Young People across the Socioeconomic Ladder: A Cross-Country Comparative Study, £20,000

    • CUHK Institute of Health Equity, Multi-dimensional Impacts of the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) on Vulnerable Populations in Hong Kong: A Mixed Method Study, $170,000

    • The Institute of Health Equity (IHE) at CUHK in Collaboration with University College London Institute of Health Equity, 01/01/2020-31/12/2024, $29,968,000

    • Health Needs, Treatment Access and Quality of Life among Rare Disease Patients and Their Caregivers, $360,000

    • Provision of Consultancy Service on Means Test of Samaritan Fund and Community Care Fund Medical Assistance Programmes, $1,480,000

Selected Publications

(* = corresponding author)​

Poverty, deprivation and socioeconomic disparity

  1. Chung RY*, Chung GK, Marmot M, Allen J, Chan D, Goldblatt P, Wong H, Lai E, Woo J, Yeoh EK, Wong SYS. COVID-19 related health inequality exists even in a city where disease incidence is relatively low: a telephone survey in Hong Kong. J Epidemiol Community Health. 2021 Jan 5:jech-2020-215392. doi: 10.1136/jech-2020-215392.

  2. Chung RY*, Marmot M, Mak JK, Gordon D, Chan D, Chung GK, Wong H, Wong SYS. Deprivation is associated with anxiety and stress. A population-based longitudinal household survey among Chinese adults in Hong Kong. J Epidemiol Community Health. 2020 Oct 24:jech-2020-214728. doi: 10.1136/jech-2020-214728.

  3. Wu Y, Yan X, Zhao S, Wang J, Ran J, Dong D, Wang M, Fung H, Yeoh EK, Chung RY*.  Association of time to diagnosis with socioeconomic position and geographical accessibility to healthcare among symptomatic COVID-19 patients: A retrospective study in Hong Kong. Health Place. 2020 Nov;66:102465. doi: 10.1016/j.healthplace.2020.102465. Epub 2020 Oct 17.

  4. Chung GKK, Lai FTT, Chan DC, Wong H, Yeoh EK, Chung RY*. Socioeconomic disadvantages over the life-course and their influence on obesity among older Hong Kong Chinese adults. Eur J Public Health. 2020 Oct 1;30(5):1013-1018. doi: 10.1093/eurpub/ckaa072. PMID: 32460329

  5. Wu Y, Yan X, Dong D, Chung RY, Yeoh EK. Equitable exit strategy is required: lessons learnt from Hong Kong's current resurgence of local outbreaks among individuals from highly deprived neighbourhoods. J Epidemiol Community Health. 2020 Dec;74(12):1080. doi: 10.1136/jech-2020-215347. Epub 2020 Sep 5.

  6. Chan SM, Wong H, Chung RY, Au-Yeung TC. Association of living density with anxiety and stress: A cross-sectional population study in Hong Kong. Health Soc Care Community. 2020 Aug 12. doi: 10.1111/hsc.13136. 

  7. Chung GKK, Yu RHY, Woo J, Lai FTT, Chung RY, Yeoh EK, Ho SC. Accelerated progression of waist-to-hip ratio but not body mass index associated with lower socioeconomic position: a cohort study of nonobese early postmenopausal Chinese women. Menopause. 2020 May;27(5):550-558. doi: 10.1097/GME.0000000000001503.

  8. Chung RY*, Dong D, Li MM. Socioeconomic gradient in health and the covid-19 outbreak. BMJ. 2020 Apr 1;369:m1329. doi: 10.1136/bmj.m1329.

  9. Chung GK, Dong D, Wong SY, Wong H, Chung RY*. Perceived poverty and health, and their roles in the poverty-health vicious cycle: a qualitative study of major stakeholders in the healthcare setting in Hong Kong.  Int J Equity Health. 2020 Jan 28;19(1):13. doi: 10.1186/s12939-020-1127-7.

  10. Chung RY*, Chung GK, Gordon D, Mak JK, Zhang LF, Chan D, Lai FTT, Wong H, Wong SY. Housing affordability effects on physical and mental health: household survey in a population with the world's greatest housing affordability stress. J Epidemiol Community Health. 2019 Nov 5.

  11. Chung GK, Lai FT, Yeoh EK, Chung RY*. Educational inequality in physician‐diagnosed hypertension widened and persisted among women from 1999 to 2014 in Hong Kong. Scientific reports. 2019 Oct 7;9(1):1‐7

  12. Chung RY*, Chan DCC, Chau NN, Huang S, Wong H, Wong SY. Poverty affects access to regular source of primary care among the general population in Hong Kong. Social Policy and Administration. 2019; 1– 18 (2018 JCR Social Science Edition: IF = 1.269; Ranking = 26/42 in Social Issues)

  13. Wong SY, Chung RY, Chan D, Chung GK, Li J, Mak D, Lau M, Tang V, Gordon D, Wong H. What are the financial barriers to medical care among the poor, the sick and the disabled in the Special Administrative Region of China? PLoS One. 2018 Nov 14;13(11):e0205794.

  14. Chung GK, Chung RY*, Chan DC, Lai FT, Wong H, Lau MK, Wong SY, Yeoh EK. The independent role of deprivation in abdominal obesity beyond income poverty. A population‐based household survey in Chinese adults. J Public Health (Oxf). 2018 Sep 12.

  15. Chung RY*, Lai FTT, Chung GKK, Yip BHK, Wong SYS, Yeoh EK. Socioeconomic disparity in mortality risks widened across generations during rapid economic development in Hong Kong: an ageperiod‐ cohort analysis from 1976 to 2010. Ann Epidemiol. 2018 Jun 13 (published online).

  16. Chung RY*, Gordon D, Wong SYS, Chan D, Chung KK, Lau M, Tang V, Wong H. Deprivation is associated with Worse Physical and Mental Health beyond Income Poverty. A Population‐based Household Survey among Chinese Adults. Qual Life Res. 2018 May 14.

  17. Wu HF, Tam T, Jin L, Lao XQ, Chung RY, Su XF, Zee B. Age, gender, and socioeconomic gradients in metabolic syndrome: biomarker evidence from a large sample in Taiwan, 2005‐2013. Ann Epidemiol. 2017 May;27(5):315‐322.e2.

  18. Lao XQ, Ma W, Chung RY, Zhang Y, Xu Y, Xu X, Nie S, Cai Q, Xia L, Su X, Jin L, Tam T, Zee BC. The diminishing socioeconomic disparity in obesity in a Chinese population with rapid economic development: analysis of serial cross‐sectional health survey data 2002‐2010. BMC Public Health. 2015 Dec 23;15(1):1282.

  19. Chung RY*, Wong SYS. Health inequality in Hong Kong. China Review‐An Interdisciplinary Journal on Greater China 2015;15(2):91‐118.

  20. Chung RY, Mercer S, Lai FT, Yip BH, Wong MC, Wong SY. Socioeconomic Determinants of Multimorbidity: A Population‐Based Household Survey of Hong Kong Chinese. PLoS One. 2015 Oct 9;10(10):e0140040.

  21. Li H, Wei X, Ma A, Chung RY*. Inequalities in Health Status among Rural Residents: EQ‐5D Findings from Household Survey China. International Journal for Equity in Health. 2014;13:41

  22. Wong CM, Ou CQ, Chan KP, Chau YK, Thach TQ, Yang L, Chung RY, Thomas GN, Peiris JSM, Wong TW, Hedley AJ, Lam TH. The effects of air pollution on mortality in socially deprived urban areas in Hong Kong, China. Environ Health Persp. 2008;116(9):1189‐1194.

  23. Ou CQ, Hedley AJ, Chung RY, Thach TQ, Chau YK, Chan KP, Yang L, Ho SY, Wong CM, Lam TH. Socioeconomic disparities in air pollution‐associated mortality. Environ Res. 2008;107(2):237‐244.

Public health ethics and justice

  1. Chung RY*, Erler A, Li HL, Au D. Using a Public Health Ethics Framework to Unpick Discrimination in COVID-19 Responses. Am J Bioeth. 2020 Jul;20(7):114-116. doi: 10.1080/15265161.2020.1779403.

  2. Li HL, Jecker NS, Chung RY. Reopening Economies during the COIVD-19 Pandemic: Reasoning about Value Tradeoffs. Am J Bioeth. 2020 Jul;20(7):136-138. doi: 10.1080/15265161.2020.1779406.

  3. Chung RY*, Li MM.  Anti-Chinese sentiment during the 2019-nCoV outbreak. Lancet. 2020 Feb 29;395(10225):686-687. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(20)30358-5. Epub 2020 Feb 12.

Migrants’ health

  1. Chung RY*, Mak JK. Physical and mental health of live-in female migrant domestic workers: A randomly sampled survey in Hong Kong. American Behavioral Scientist. 2020 Mar 18.

  2. Chung RY*, Liao T, Fong E. Data collection for migrant live-in domestic workers: A three-stage cluster sampling method. American Behavioral Scientist. 2020 Mar 14. 

  3. Griffiths SM, Dong D, Chung RY. Forgotten needs of children left behind by migration. Lancet. 2018 Dec 15;392(10164):2518‐2519.

  4. Cheung JTK, Tsoi VWY, Wong KHK, Chung RY. Abuse and depression among Filipino foreign domestic helpers. A cross‐sectional survey in Hong Kong. Public Health. 2018 Nov 23;166:121‐127.

  5. Chung RY, Griffiths SM. Migration and health in the world: a global public health perspective. Public Health. 2018 May;158:64‐65.

  6. Diaz E, Ortiz‐Barreda G, Ben‐Shlomo Y, Holdsworth M, Salami B, Rammohan A, Chung RY, Padmadas SS, Krafft T. Interventions to improve immigrant health. A scoping review. Eur J Public Health. 2017 Jun 1;27(3):433‐439.

  7. Li H, Chung RY*, Wei X, Mou J, Wong SY, Wong MC, Zhang D, Zhang Y, Griffiths S. Comparison of perceived quality amongst migrant and local patients using primary health care delivered by community health centres in Shenzhen, China. BMC Fam Pract. 2014 Apr 29;15(1):76.

​Aging and people with serious and chronic illness

  1. Lai FTT, Guthrie B, Mercer SW, Smith DJ, Yip BHK, Chung GKK, Lee KP, Chung RY, Chau PYK, Wong ELY, Yeoh EK, Wong SYS. Association between antipsychotic use and acute ischemic heart disease in women but not in men: a retrospective cohort study of over one million primary care patients. BMC Med. 2020 Nov 2;18(1):289. doi: 10.1186/s12916-020-01765-w.

  2. Wong SYS, Zhang D, Sit RWS, Yip BHK, Chung RY, Wong CKM, Chan DCC, Sun W, Kwok KO, Mercer SW. Impact of COVID-19 on loneliness, mental health, and health service utilisation: a prospective cohort study of older adults with multimorbidity in primary care. Br J Gen Pract. 2020 Oct 29;70(700):e817-e824. doi: 10.3399/bjgp20X713021.

  3. Dong D, Chung RY, Chan RHW, Gong S, Xu RH. Why is misdiagnosis more likely among some people with rare diseases than others? Insights from a population-based cross-sectional study in China.  Orphanet J Rare Dis. 2020 Oct 28;15(1):307. doi: 10.1186/s13023-020-01587-2.

  4. Wong EL, Kiang N, Chung RY, Lau J, Chau PY, Wong SY, Woo J, Chan EY, Yeoh EK. Cite Share  Quality of Palliative and End-Of-Life Care in Hong Kong: Perspectives of Healthcare Providers. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2020 Jul 16;17(14):5130. doi: 10.3390/ijerph17145130.

  5. Chung RY*, Dong D, Chau NNS, Chau PY, Yeoh EK, Wong EL. Examining the Gaps and Issues of End-of-Life Care among Older Population through the Lens of Socioecological Model-A Multi-Method Qualitative Study of Hong Kong.  Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2020 Jul 14;17(14):5072. doi: 10.3390/ijerph17145072.

  6. Chung GKK, Yu RHY, Ho SSY, Woo J, Chung RY, Yeoh EK, Ho SC. Prospective Association of Obesity Patterns with Subclinical Carotid Plaque Development in Early Postmenopausal Chinese Women. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2020 Jul;28(7):1342-1350. doi: 10.1002/oby.22820.

  7. Lai FTT, Mercer SW, Guthrie B, Yip BHK, Chung GKK, Zou D, Lee KP, Chau PYK, Chung RY, Wong ELY, Yeoh EK, Wong SYS. Sociodemographic moderation of the association between depression and stroke incidence in a retrospective cohort of 0.4 million primary care recipients with hypertension. Psychol Med. 2020 Jun 11:1-9. doi: 10.1017/S0033291720001920.

  8. Lai FTT, Guthrie B, Wong SYS, Yip BHK, Chung GKK, Yeoh, EK, Chung RY*. Sex‐specific intergenerational trends in morbidity burden and multimorbidity status in Hong Kong community: an age‐period‐cohort analysis of repeated population surveys. BMJ Open. 2019 Jan 25;9.​

  9. Lai FTT, Wong SYS, Yip BHK, Guthrie B, Mercer SW, Chung RY, Chung GKK, Chau PYK, Wong ELY, Woo J, Yeoh EK. Multimorbidity in middle age predicts more subsequent hospital admissions than in older age: A nine‐year retrospective cohort study of 121,188 discharged in‐patients. Eur J Intern Med. 2018 Dec 20.

  10. Yeoh EK, Wong MCS, Wong ELY, Yam C, Poon CM, Chung RY, Chong M, Fang Y, Wang HHX, Liang M, Cheung WWL, Chan CH, Zee B, Coats AJS. Benefits and limitations of implementing Chronic Care Model (CCM) in primary care programs: A systematic review. Int J Cardiol. 2018 May 1;258:279‐288.

  11. Lau JY, Wong EL, Chung RY, Law SCK, Threapleton D, Kiang N, Chau P, Wong SYS, Woo J, Yeoh EK. Collaborate across silos: Perceived barriers to integration of care for the elderly from the perspectives of service providers. Int J Health Plann Manage. 2018 Apr 27.

  12. Threapleton DE, Chung RY, Wong SYS, Wong ELY, Kiang N, Chau PYK, Woo J, Chung VCH, Yeoh EK. Care Toward the End of Life in Older Populations and Its Implementation Facilitators and Barriers: A Scoping Review. J Am Med Dir Assoc. 2017 Dec 1;18(12):1000‐1009.e4.

  13. Wong SY, Zou D, Chung RY, Sit RW, Zhang D, Chan D, Yeoh EK, Woo JW. Regular Source of Care for the Elderly: A Cross‐National Comparative Study of Hong Kong With 11 Developed Countries. J Am Med Dir Assoc. 2017 Sep 1;18(9):807.e1‐807.e8.

  14. Threapleton DE, Chung RY, Wong SYS, Wong E, Chau P, Woo J, Chung VCH, Yeoh EK. Integrated care for older populations and its implementation facilitators and barriers: A rapid scoping review. Int J Qual Health Care. 2017 Jun 1;29(3):327‐334.

  15. Chung RY*, Wong EL, Kiang N, Chau PY, Lau JYC, Wong SY, Yeoh EK, Woo JW. Knowledge, Attitudes, and Preferences of Advance Decisions, End‐of‐Life Care, and Place of Care and Death in Hong Kong. A Population‐Based Telephone Survey of 1067 Adults. J Am Med Dir Assoc. 2017 Apr 1;18(4):367.e19‐367.e27.

  16. Chung RY, Mercer SW, Yip BHK, Chan SWC, Lai FTT, Wang HHX, Wong MCS, Wong CKM, Sit RWS, Yeoh EK, Wong SYS. The association between types of regular primary care and hospitalization among people with and without multimorbidity. A household survey on 25,780 Chinese. Scientific Reports. 2016 Jul 20;6:29758.

  17. Woo J, Chan YLH, Chong AMl, Zou M, Chung RY, Kwok CYT. Medical Ethical Principles May Drive Improvement of Quality of Dying in Hong Kong. Journal of Palliative Care & Medicine 2015;5(5):227‐232.

  18. Wong MC, Liu J, Zhou S, Li S, Su X, Wang HH, Chung RY, Yip BH, Wong SY, Lau JT. The association between multimorbidity and poor adherence to cardiovascular medications. Int J Cardiol. 2014 Dec 15;177(2):477‐82.

  19. Chung RY, Tin KYK, Cowling BJ, Chan KP, Chan WM, Lo SV, Leung GM. Long‐term care cost drivers and expenditure projection to 2036 in Hong Kong. BMC Health Serv Res. 2009 Sep 24;9:172.


​Miscellaneous – Social and lifecourse epidemiology

  1. Wong EL, Liao JM, Etherton-Beer C, Baldassar L, Cheung G, Dale CM, Flo E, Husebø BS, Lay-Yee R, Millard A, Peri KA, Thokala P, Wong CH, Chau PY, Chan CY, Chung RY, Yeoh EK.  Scoping Review: Intergenerational Resource Transfer and Possible Enabling Factors. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2020 Oct 27;17(21):7868. doi: 10.3390/ijerph17217868.

  2. Chung RY*, Tsoi KKF, Kyaw MH, Lui AR, Lai FTT, Sung JJ. A population‐based age‐period‐cohort study of colorectal cancer incidence comparing Asia against the West. Cancer Epidemiology. 2019 Jan 16;59:29‐36.

  3. Chung RY, Yip BH, Chan SS, Wong SY. Cohort effects of suicide mortality are sex specific in the rapidly developed Hong Kong Chinese population, 1976‐2010. Depress Anxiety. 2015 Sep 28.

  4. Chung RY, Chan D, Woo J, Kwok T, Leung JC, Lai FT, Wong SY. Erectile Dysfunction is Associated with Subsequent Cardiovascular and Respiratory Mortality in Cohort of 1,436 Chinese Elderly Men. J Sex Med. 2015 Jul;12(7):1568‐76.

  5. Chung RY, Leung JCS, Chan DCC, Woo J, Wong CKM, Wong SYS. Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms (LUTS) as a Risk Factor for Depressive Symptoms in Elderly Men: Results from a Large Prospective Study in Southern Chinese Men. PLoS One. 2013 Sep 30.

  6. Chung RY, Leung GM, Cowling BJ, Schooling CM. Patterns of and hypotheses for infection‐related cancers in a Chinese population with rapid economic development. Epidemiol Infect. 2012 Oct;140(10):1904‐19.

  7. Chung RY, Schooling CM, Cowling BJ, Leung GM. How does socioeconomic development affect risk of mortality? An age‐period‐cohort analysis from a recently transitioned population in China. Am J Epidemiol. 2010 Feb 1;171(3):345‐56.

Book Chapters

  1. Chung RY. “思考原則--生命倫理看生死”. [生死教育講呢啲] (ed. 伍桂麟、鍾一諾、梁梓敦), P.035-038, 明窗出版社, 2019.07

  2. Chung RY. “從高錕離世再思臨終照顧”. [生死教育講呢啲] (ed. 伍桂麟、鍾一諾、梁梓敦), P.142-146, 明窗出版社, 2019.07.

  3. Chung RY, Yeoh EK. “Chapter 3 – Policy Directions for End‐of‐Life Care in Hong Kong.” Innovation Impact. The Foundation of Community‐Based End‐of‐life Care in Hong Kong ed. by Chan IKN, Fong CHC, Wong EY, Lou VWQ and Chan CLW. JCECC; 2019.

  4. Chung RY. “Silent Teachers – The Life and Death Education Behind Body Donation” [無言老師‐‐遺體捐贈背後的生死教育課] (eds. Chan SO, Ng P) Ming Pao Press [明報出版社] July 2018.

  5. Chung RY, Wong SYS. "Health Inequality in Hong Kong". Poverty in a Rich Society ed. by Maggie KW Lau, David Gordon. Hong Kong: CUHK Press, 2017.

  6. Chung RY and Kim JH. "Epidemiology: from Observation to Public Health Action". Routledge Handbook of Global Public Health in Asia ed. by Griffiths SM, Tang JL and Yeoh EK. pp.118–132. Routledge, London and New York; 2014.

Last Updated: 22 July 2020