Deborah H. Nygard 

Dr. Nygard is a licensed clinical psychologist with 45 years experience.  He has worked full-time in nursing homes and assisted living for 20.   He has a track record of being  supportive of the rights of elders as a means of helping them find the most fulfilling path for their later years.  As part of that advocacy he has been a member of the Eden Alternative for 16 years, moving from Associate, to Educator, to Mentor.

He is the founder of the Tennessee Eden Alternative Coalition (integrating practitioners, state surveyors and administrators). He has presented 150 day-long programs on "Psychiatric Problems in the Aging Population" and has educated over 3,000 psychologists, social workers and nurses about the problems and solutions in the care of people of advanced age.

Dr. Nygard helped found the GeroPsych psychology division of Key Rehabilitation and grew, trained and supervised that division to include 25 psychologists who serve 45 nursing homes in Tennessee, Kansas, Missouri, Iowa and Nebraska. He has given educational talks to health professionals and family members at the Nashville Veteran's Association Hospital, the Meharry Medical College,  the New York Lower Tier Health Consortium, Leading Age Iowa, Southeast Recreational Therapist's Symposium, Pioneer Network, and at Medicare/Tennessee Department of Health/Eden Alternative 3-day seminar on reducing anti-psychotic medications. ​



Deborah Nygard PT has been a practicing physical therapist for 40 years. She started her career as a pediatric PT but has worked in geriatrics since 1986. She has worked in a variety of settings, including skilled nursing facilities, rehabilitation hospitals, home health agencies and assisted living facilities.

In addition to her PT duties, Ms. Nygard has presented daylong seminars about balance for Key Rehabilitation, Inc. and also trained clinical support staff for GeroPsych, the psychology division of Key Rehabilitation.

She works with family members on how to support a loved one who is returning from the hospital following knee replacement, hip surgery, or just a stay in a hospital bed that has resulting in debilitation. She has done home assessments to assist in planning home modifications to improve accessibility.

Her clinical skills have been honed by experience to produce outstanding results.

Her patient manner and positive attitude make her beloved by patients and families alike.

N. Kortner Nygard, Ph.D.