• Post last modified:October 5, 2020
  • Post category:Insurance

Care of Young Daughter at Connecticut Children’s

L­­­­­eads Stafford Family to Get Involved

For any parent, the thought of a sick child can be scary enough.
But what if everything you are doing to help your child get better is
actually making things worse?

This is the situation the Paradiso family of Stafford, CT found
themselves in approximately one year ago. After a peaceful weekend at
the beach, Chris and MaryAlice Paradiso were woken to hear their
one-year old daughter, Mia, screaming in considerable pain. When Mary
Alice went to Mia’s bedside she found her daughter, who was recently
given antibiotics for a cold, purplish red, with a fever of 104 degrees
and her eyes swollen shut.

“I could feel the heat coming off her before I reached the bed,”
said Mary Alice. “Because she was so young she couldn’t tell me what was
wrong with her but it was very clear that this was something much more
serious than a cold.”

Chris Paradiso rushed Mia to Connecticut Children’s, bypassing
several hospitals on the way that were closer to the Paradiso’s home. “I
know there are several good hospitals in the area that were closer to
our house but the thought of going anywhere beside Connecticut
Children’s never crossed our mind,” said Chris.

At the Medical Center, Mia was observed by a team of specialists
who at first, were challenged to determine just what it was that was
causing Mia’s condition. As Mia’s condition continued to deteriorate,
her doctors began to focus in on a rare condition commonly known as
serum sickness.

In its simplest terms, serum sickness results from a delayed
immune system response either to certain kinds of medication or to
antiserum. In Mia’s case, the doctors determined that Mia’s fever,
swelling and skin rash were being caused by a form of allergic condition
that resulted from the antibiotics that Mia was given to treat her
cold. What makes serum sickness so difficult to diagnose is that
symptoms of the disease typically don’t start appearing until 7 – 21
days after the medication is taken.

“It was a huge relief when we were able to find out what was
wrong with Mia,” said Mary Alice. “The not knowing was the most
nerve-wracking part of the whole ordeal. We were lucky that the doctors
and nurses at the hospital were able to diagnose Mia as quickly as they
did and they were great in sharing information with Chris and me to make
sure we knew everything they knew.”

In fact, it was the care for the whole family at Connecticut
Children’s that touched Mary Alice and Chris the most. “Though we only
ended up staying for three days, everyone looked out for Chris and I as
well as Mia. They knew right away when Chris and I needed a break and
would volunteer to cuddle Mia and give us a moment alone.”

Mary Alice was also moved by observing one other girl who was
being cared for on the same floor as Mia. “She had obviously been at
Connecticut Children’s for a period of time and what struck me was that
she was no longer just a patient, she was now a friend to the staff. I
remember thinking, what a great place this must be for her to feel so

The Paradisos were both so moved that upon bringing Mia home from
the Medical Center, they immediately decided they needed to do
something to give back to Connecticut Children’s.

Last spring, Paradiso Insurance hosted a “Step Up to the Plate
Legends Night Dinner” in Stafford. The proceeds of the event, which
featured former major league stars from the Boston Red Sox and New York
Yankees, went to benefit Connecticut Children’s. Since then, the
Paradisos have also supported other events on behalf of the Medical

“We are committed to doing everything we can to help see that
other families have the same great experience we did with Mia,” said
Chris Paradiso. “This hospital changes people’s lives every day; it’s a
place that can never be taken for granted.”

For information about how you can get involved with Paradiso
Insurance’s efforts to support the Connecticut Children’s Medical
Center, please give us a call toll free at 800-660-2991 or at our local
number, 860-684-5270.  If you would like to be involved in our Halloween
program, gathering items for & assembling Halloween goodie bags to
be distributed to the terminally ill residents of CCMC, be sure to
contact us asap!

We are collecting:

  • stickers
  • erasers
  • silly bands
  • pencils
  • small toys

If these items are not available to you at this time, donations may
be made out to Paradiso Insurance FBO CCMC or “Paradiso Insurance for
the Benefit of Connecticut Children’s Medical Center.”