Ewa Roos has a passion for advancing the frontiers of knowledge in muscle and joint health to improve the quality of life of those with musculoskeletal disease and to improve health care delivery for these conditions. Her focus is on patient involvement, development and use of patient-reported outcomes, non-surgical and surgical treatments and clinical care pathways. Professor Roos is an internationally leading researcher and change agent in the field of musculoskeletal health. She has been able to both produce high-impact clinical research and translate that research into clinical tools that are easily and effectively implemented in hospitals, primary care clinics and even community settings in municipalities. She has also served as an expert on clinical guideline committees for osteoarthritis (Sweden and Norway 2003, Sweden 2012, 2017–, Osteoarthritis Research Society International 2014, China 2017), knee osteoarthritis (Denmark 2012) and meniscus pathology (Denmark 2015), thereby impacting the delivery of clinical care worldwide.
One of the principal outcomes from her research has been the development of the Good Life with osteoArthritis in Denmark (GLA:D®) project for people with knee and hip pain. The GLA:D® project is an outstanding example of how to successfully implement evidence-based clinical guidelines in primary health care practice and municipalities. Its underlying principles focus on patient education, patient empowerment, exercises and self-management. Since 2013, more than 1100 clinicians nationwide have been trained in delivering GLA:D® care to 40,000+ patients, who report remarkable improvements in health in terms of less pain, less disability, consumption of less pain medication, increase in physical activity, reduced sick leave and return to work (www.glaid.dk). The GLA:D® project now serves as a template for establishing similar initiatives in other countries including Canada (2015), Australia (2016) China (2017) and Switzerland (2019). In 2019, GLA:D® won the Value-Based Health Care (VBHC) Prize in competition with 175+ international applications from all medical fields with the following motivation: “Proven approach that is being scaled to other countries and for other conditions (e.g., back pain); Allows patient to take on responsibility for treating the condition; Great example of using therapeutic care rather than drugs or surgery for treating joint, and – potentially – back pain; Low costs and huge impact on health system costs.”
In 2014, her contribution to public health was recognized when she won the OARSI (Osteoarthritis Research Society International) Clinical Research Award for her “outstanding work in exercise as prevention and treatment of joint pain, joint injury and osteoarthritis”. This is the first time this highly competitive award was given to someone other than a medical doctor and to a Danish researcher. In addition, in 2014, she was awarded the Queen Ingrid of Denmark’s prize for outstanding arthritis research by Queen Margrethe II of Denmark, and the Danish Rheumatism Association.
Professor Roos is the author of 225 peer-reviewed publications. She has published in high impact journals such as the New England Journal of Medicine, the British Medical Journal and The Lancet. Her work has been cited in total 13336 times and her h-index is 57 (Web of Science, January 2019). She has supervised 24 PhD theses to completion with her students having professional backgrounds in medicine, physiotherapy, nursing and sports. Four of her PhD students have received awards and/or prestigious post-doctoral funding from the Swedish and Danish Medical Research Councils, and ERC Starting and Consolidator grants. Professor Roos has, as an applicant or co-applicant, attained research funding from EU, EIT Health, the national funding bodies in Sweden (VR), Canada (CIHR), Australia (NMHCR) and USA (NIH), health care regions in Sweden and Denmark, and numerous other funds.