In a pretty, well-appointed home just across Bayshore Road from the calming waters of Roberts Bay, Mary Ann Hodge and her daughter, Katie Hodge Corrigan, keep their assisted living facility, Mary’s on Bayshore, “all in the family.” After all, it was in this very house that Mary Ann herself grew up in as a child.
“The house was built by my mom and dad in 1956,” Mary Ann smiles and explains. “My daughter, Katie, and I came here and started Mary’s on Bayshore Assisted Living 22 years ago. We worked with Tallahassee and became a licensed assisted living facility through the state. It’s such a pleasure to be able to offer this care right here in our family home.”
A Venice High School graduate, Mary Ann became a registered nurse specializing in critical care and emergency room nursing. Her marriage took her to the Pacific Northwest, where her husband worked in the railroad and timber industries and she began to dream of opening an assisted living facility.
“I came home when my parents passed away,” Mary Ann explains. “I walked in one day with two suitcases and two dogs from Washington State, and the house was totally empty. It took about three years to get the house set up and everything licensed as I worked part-time at the hospital. We began with two bedrooms and two baths and a license to care for two residents, and have since expanded to six bedrooms and six baths and we usually run at full capacity.”
Mary Ann and Katie are selective when it comes to taking in new residents as they strive for harmony in the home. Mary’s on Bayshore also offers a very high staff to resident ratio, ensuring hands-on, constant care.
“Because our ratio is two to one,” Mary Ann explains, “we are always interacting with our residents. We become very close with our residents and can immediately spot any change in them, mentally or physically. Our specialty is keeping people out of the emergency room and hospital. We know our residents so well that we can head off any looming issues before it results in medical care. We receive high marks for this in our industry.”
All meals and snacks are homemade on-site with fresh ingredients, and activities are tailored to the needs and capabilities of the residents. Mary Ann and Katie develop such strong bonds with their residents’ families that family members continue to visit them years after the resident has passed.
“The families really love Katie,” says Mary Ann of her daughter. “She has got the patience of a saint. Working with her mother for 22 years? I couldn't do it! Katie never asks for a day off. She always says, ‘I can do it!’ Frankly, she is the wind under my wings.”
“I really enjoy getting to know our residents and meeting their children,” Katie says. “It’s nice getting positive feedback from the families. They love having the peace of mind that we give them that their loved one is cared for with attention and affection.”
“Assisted living facilities in Florida were started with the idea of bringing the elderly into a neighborhood, into small family homes and to have them in the sorts of neighborhoods they were used to throughout their lives and so they could feel like they were part of a family,” Mary Ann explains. “Things are changing quickly in the industry, but we are happy here at Mary’s on Bayshore that our residents continue to have that experience.”
441 Bayshore Drive, Venice | 941.484.3219 | MarysOnBayshore.com