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History of Isabella Center

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Isabella Center Photographed from the Street Below

History of Isabella Center

Isabella, a non-profit, non-sectarian organization, has been a pioneer in the care of the elderly since 1875. Since its inspired beginning, Isabella has grown from a traditional nursing home to a leading health care organization providing a continuum of services on its own campus and in the community at large.

Today, Isabella is a large complex offering a diversity of services on four well-landscaped acres.

When Anna and Oswald Ottendorfer opened the first home in 1875, they named it in honor of their daughter, Isabella Uhl, whose early death at the age of 27 cut short her remarkable career in caring for the poor. Initially located in Astoria, Queens, Isabella was dedicated to the care of indigent elderly women. Isabella moved to its present location in 1889 and simultaneously expanded its mission to care for both women and men without regard to race, creed or nationality.

In addition to a 705-bed nursing home, Isabella offers moderately priced senior housing, home care, short and long-term rehabilitation, and a variety of community programs designed to help older adults remain healthy while living at home.

In December 2017, Isabella became an affiliated agency of the MJHS Health System. Isabella and MJHS Health System share rich histories that date back more than 100 years. Both organizations share a common mission, values, and commitment to caring for diverse populations when they are most vulnerable.

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