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Clayton Fire Department


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The S.T.A.R.S. program helps coordinate and coach ambulance districts, fire districts and community hospitals to         recognize the special needs of patients inside their coverage area and undergo the appropriate, specialized training to care for these patients’ special medical needs.  The goal is to have pertinent patient information in the hands of the medical professionals before they even arrive at the patient’s side. This way they can provide the care needed immediately and skillfully. This ultimately helps decrease anxiety and painful, unnecessary measure and in achieving better outcomes, faster.

Children who especially benefit are those with:

  • Significant developmental delay
  • Seizure disorders
  • Cardiac history
  • In-clinic mental health evaluation
  • Cerebral shunts
  • Tracheostomies
  • Autism spectrum disorder
  • Children with a DNR order
  • Any atypical disease or syndrome

How STARS Works

The fire or ambulance district will appoint a STARS coordinator and determine a point of contact for families.  Once a child - or a “star” - is identified for the program, each patient will be given a STARS number or identifier, and a home visit is scheduled with the patient and family. This is to secure pertinent medical information and share realistic expectations about the program, like the district’s capabilities and limitations. Open communication is key!

Special advanced training and education is then provided by SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital for the ambulance district, fire department and/or the community hospital. Pre-plans are then set to match the anticipated needs of the “star” child for those emergency or hospitalization situations.

How STARS is Successful

The STARS program works best if the most current preplan is in the hands of the first responders and local hospital so they may reference it prior to seeing the child. 
Regular contact between caregivers and first responders for updates on medical changes is imperative. When changes are made, information should be shared with all parties involved, following - of course - the rules and regulations for “flagging” an address and passing private health information from one caregiver to another.

STARS was created by experienced first responders and training is coordinated through and provided by SSM Health Cardinal Glennon, where experienced staff are acutely aware of the capabilities and limitations of first responders and community hospitals. Thus, making the relationship one of mutual benefit.

For further questions,  or to enroll your STAR, Please contact the Clayton Fire Department STARRS Manager John Herr @ (314)290-8485 or 

Special Needs Registry

The Special Needs Registry (SNR) is a secure information database maintained by the Clayton Police Department that helps officers recognize and respond to individuals with special needs.  Voluntarily provide information about a loved one with special needs of any age, who may require special assistance in an emergency or interaction with first responders. Officers can access the information in the secure SNR database to assist residents with special needs if the person is lost, found or needs help.

What information is provided in the Special Needs Registry?

  1. A photograph, description and contact information for the person
  2. Information needed to find those who wander away from home and identify "found" individuals
  3. Important medical, safety and behavioral concerns
  4. Helpful suggestions for interacting with the person with a disability or medical condition

Who can enroll?

Parents and caregivers may enroll a person of any age with any type of medical condition or disability, including but not limited to

  • Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Alzheimer's
  • Dementia
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Down Syndrome
  • Epilepsy

Adults with special needs may also enroll themselves to provide important information in case of emergency.  In the online Special Needs Registration Form, an option is available to have the participant’s information forwarded to the Clayton Fire Department to start the registration for their Special Needs Tracking and Awareness Response System (additional information below).  

Contact Lt. Mark Smith if you have any questions about the SNR: or (314) 290-8406.