"She understands the management of patients, both medically and emotionally," Schwab added. "But her best characteristic is her humility to accompany her generous and gregarious personality."
High accolades also came from Mark Mannis, department chair, in nominating Li.
"Dr. Li is an outstanding physician who is kind and compassionate to her patients and co-workers alike. Her unflagging competence is infused with genuine concern for her patients."
"I am honored," Li says. "Ultimately, this award is a reflection not of me, but of my parents and of my teachers – all of my heroes who have inspired me to do my best."
Li received a bachelor of science degree from Yale University and her medical degree from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. She did her internship at Georgetown University and Inova Fairfax Hospital in Virginia, returned to Baylor College for an ophthalmology residency, then joined UC Davis Health System in 2009 for a fellowship in cornea and external diseases.
"We have made huge strides in terms of what we can offer our patients," she says. "We are in a new era of corneal transplantation. Vision is something that people universally care about, and the help and hope we are able to provide makes this field so rewarding."
Li’s enthusiasm fuels her clinical research as well as her dedication to her patients. "We have made huge strides in terms of what we can offer our patients," she says. "We are in a new era of corneal transplantation. Vision is something that people universally care about, and the help and hope we are able to provide makes this field so rewarding."
Though her career has taken her from coast to coast, she says, "My time here at UC Davis Health System has been one of the best experiences of my life. The UC Davis Eye Center’s wonderful faculty, residents and staff have been so welcoming. And from my three wonderful mentors – Drs. Mark Mannis, Ivan Schwab and Vahid Feiz – I’ve learned not only how to better diagnose and treat corneal diseases, but also how to be a better physician in every sense of the word."
After completing her fellowship, Li took a position at the Devers Eye Institute in Portland, Ore., where she remains active in clinical research and training fellows in addition to her clinical and surgical responsibilities.
The Clinical Fellow Professionalism Award recog-nizes fellows who exhibit attributes of professionalism as defined by the American Board of Internal Medicine, encompassing aspiration to altruism, accountability, excellence, duty, service, honor, integrity and respect for others. Li received the award at the Senior Faculty Banquet on May 20.
The need is significant. More than 81 million Americans over age 20 have one or more types of cardiovascular disease such as high blood pressure, coronary heart disease or congestive heart failure. Peripheral vascular disease is estimated to affect up to 10 million Americans. UC Davis Health System is improving cardiovascular health through state-of-the-art patient care, cutting-edge research, education and outreach.