Right at Home: Jackson’s Story

Jackson, one of our gastroenterology patients, poses for a photoJackson Shorette, who is about to turn 3, practically lives within walking distance of his pediatric gastroenterologist. But to get care, he doesn’t even need to leave the house.

Sarita Singhal, MD, practices at Connecticut Children’s location in South Hadley, Western Mass., right around the corner from the Shorette family. When the office opened in September 2019, Jackson was Dr. Singhal’s very first patient in the new space.

He was a perfect welcome wagon. “Jackson is so outgoing,” says mom Shelley, “the staff at his day care nicknamed him ‘the mayor.’”

When Connecticut Children’s launched Video Visits a few months ago, Jackson got to welcome Dr. Singhal to an even more convenient location: his own home.

> Schedule a Video Visit in more than 30 specialties

“To get the care we need without leaving home – that’s priceless”

Jackson sees Dr. Singhal for chronic constipation, a condition that needs careful monitoring. In the spring, when Shelley noticed changes in Jackson’s bowel movements and habits, she knew they needed an appointment. With schools closed due to COVID-19 and husband Brett out of the house for work, Shelley was juggling both Jackson and his baby brother, Jordan.

So they decided to try a Video Visit.

“I was a little apprehensive at first, knowing that Dr. Singhal wouldn’t be able to feel Jackson’s abdomen,” says Shelley. “But I was able to explain everything just as if I was sitting in the office. I showed her Jackson’s belly. She felt very confident in what I was describing and how Jackson was presenting.”

They talked through the best option, an adjustment in Jackson’s medication, and Dr. Singhal sent the updated prescription to Jackson’s pharmacy then and there.

“At the end of the call I really felt like, wow, this was so easy,” says Shelley. “I’m a working mom with two kids under the age of 3. I have my hands full! To connect with a pediatric specialist and get the care we need without ever leaving home – that’s priceless.”

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“I’m so glad to have a partner”

Jackson, one of our gastroenterology patients, poses for a photoSince his Video Visit and updated medication, Jackson is doing great – doting on his baby brother, running around outside and waving hello to everyone, and cracking up Shelley and Brett “even when it’s not appropriate to laugh,” says Shelley.

And for the next time he needs care, the family knows where to turn.

“I wish that Jackson didn’t have these issues, but we’re working through it and I’m so glad to have a partner,” says Shelley. “Dr. Singhal is a wonderful physician, and so caring. She understands our health goals. She gets that we don’t want to use certain medications that impact Jackson’s nervous system – she recognizes and reinforces that consistently. I always want her to be Jackson’s physician.”

As for the new, virtual way to get together?

“Jackson loved it,” Shelley says. When the Video Visit with Dr. Singhal ended and they closed out of the screen, Jackson immediately turned to Shelley. “I want to see her again!” he exclaimed.

“Mr. Outgoing,” laughs Shelley, “that’s him.”

Schedule a Video Visit in more than 30 specialties >>

Learn about Connecticut Children’s gastroenterology services >>

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