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Fire department receives federal certification in pediatric services

By Shoshana Stahl

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    CLAYTON, Missouri (KMOV) — Parents in Clayton can sleep better at night knowing their kids are a little bit safer.

This comes as the fire department got special certification in August, specifically to provide additional services to children.

The Clayton Fire Department has a federal pediatric certification called the Emergency Medical Services for Children.

Lt. Medical Officer Steffany Schwertmann says the goal is to reduce child mortality and morbidity.

“You really don’t know what to expect when it comes to children because they can have all the illnesses and morbidities that adults have but they’re not just little adults,” Lt. Schwertmann says. “They have to be treated a very specific way.”

That means Clayton fire personnel are trained in pediatric-specific care and carry pediatric-specific equipment.

“We actually have this chart that was created specifically for our protocol and our medications that we administer to our pediatrics within Clayton,” Lt. Schwertmann says.

Additional medical equipment in the truck includes separate bags divided into different age and weight ranges filled with things like airway devices.

“Fitted for children of that weight and an extra just in case they’re a little small or a little big or their anatomy is different, or whether they’re special needs,” Lt. Schwertmann says.

Grandparent Dana Havens has two grandchildren that live in Clayton. For Havens, knowing EMS in Clayton has this certification makes her feel more comfortable that her grandkids are safe.

“Knowing that they’re gonna be well taken care of in the event of an emergency, that is just amazing just to know that would happen,” Havens says. “They also attend a daycare in Clayton and that helps me to know if something happens that they’ll either come to their house or their daycare.”

Lt. Schwertmann says people in Clayton can feel confident that their children are getting the best care out there in an emergency.

“Pediatrics are not the majority of our call volume,” Lt. Schwertmann says. “They’re actually more of the rare calls that we get so for us to maintain that training and be good at what we do when it comes to that is very important.”

Lt. Schwertmann says the Clayton Fire Department has a training next month specifically focused on special needs children.

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