Kay Cahill Graham, PhD, OTR/L


Kay Graham Headshot

In her twenty-five years as an occupational therapist, Kay Graham has practiced in a variety of adult settings including acute care, skilled nursing, outpatient, aquatic therapy, and home health.  She began her career in the acute care setting where she developed a love for the critical care patient and working as part of a team with the patient and other professionals.  In the outpatient setting, she specialized in treating neurologically involved clients and patients with complex diagnosis and chronic pain. She is very interested in the mind-body connection within health and well-being. She enjoys others helping others discover the power they have within themselves to heal and remain healthy especially using techniques such as myofascial release and energy work.

Throughout her career, she has gravitated towards opportunities to mentor and teach across program areas and disciplines whether as a rehab specialist, workshop leader, faculty course coordinator, and most recently as Department Chair for the Gainesville Day Occupational Therapy Program at Brenau.  She received her Certificate in Gerontology and her PhD in Health Promotion and Behavior in the College of Public Health at the University of Georgia.  Her dissertation research focused on chronic disease self-management and self-efficacy to manage chronic conditions and falls.

Dr. Graham views occupational therapists as bridges between the public health world and the medical world.  She works actively to bring these areas in together in more effective partnerships and coordinated services.  Towards this end, she serves on the Georgia Gerontology Society board, as a member of Injury Prevention Research Center at Emory Fall Task Force, and as a member of the Georgia Falls Prevention Coalition.

She teaches in the Kinesiology course series, the Adult/Older Adult course series, Health Education and Promotion as well as supervising thesis groups in the School of Occupational Therapy at Brenau University. Current research interests center around optimized aging and promotion of health self-management and maintenance.  Current thesis groups include practitioner knowledge and action regarding health literacy for written materials in skilled nursing/subacute facilities, the role of environmental resources in transitions to independent living communities, and the relationship between social participation and quality of life at senior centers.

Recent publications:

Graham, K., Smith, M., Hall, J., Emerson, K., & Wilson, M. (2016).  Exploring changes in two types of self-efficacy following participation in a chronic disease self-management program. Frontiers in Public Health-Health Promotion and Education.4(196). Doi:10.3389/fpubh.2016.00196

Graham, K. (2016). An exploration of self-efficacy among older adult participants in a disease self-management program. The University of Georgia, Georgia. (Unpublished doctoral dissertation).

Graham, K. Smith, M., Hall, J., Emerson, K., & Wilson, M.  (2016).  Understanding the impact of older adult CDSMP participation on self-efficacies to manage falls and chronic disease.  Manuscript submitted for publication.

Weissman-Miller, D., & Graham, K. (2015). Novel Scale Development for Fear of Falling and Falls: Analysed Using a Semiparametric Ratio Estimator (SPRE). International Journal Of Statistics and Probability, 4(3), p161. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.5539/ijsp. –published


Kay Graham

Email: kgraham1@brenau.edu


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