ST. PETERSBURG – In 2013, Bon Secours St. Petersburg Health System begins a year of celebrating 50 years of continuous operations.
On June 16, 1963, a brand new “convalescent home” called Florida Care of St. Petersburg opened to much fanfare. J. Brailey Odham, a Florida businessman and politician, spearheaded the effort and declared that Florida Care would be “the finest convalescent center in the world.” Within a few months, Odham, who had no health care experience, found running the facility to be too difficult and sold it to a nursing home operator from Philadelphia, Warren P. Griffith, who changed the name to Fairview of St. Petersburg. Later, it became known as Fairview Manor.
In 1975, the Catholic Diocese of St. Petersburg purchased the home, converted it to a nonprofit, Catholic skilled nursing facility, and renamed it Maria Manor Health Care.
hen, in 1988, at a time when many Catholic dioceses were divesting themselves from operating health care facilities, the Sisters of Bon Secours, through the newly incorporated Bon Secours Health System, assumed control of Maria Manor’s operations. The five-year-old health system was already operating nursing homes and hospitals in Virginia, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Florida.
In November of 2000, Bon Secours Place, an assisted living facility licensed for 105 residents, was added to the campus. The facility was developed as a community with a neighborhood concept containing approximately 12 residents per neighborhood.