Family and Children's Association (FCA)

A First for Long Island Family & Children's Association & Catholic Health Services Offer "SHERPA" Services to Overdose Survivors and their Families


WEST ISLIP, NEW YORK – To further combat the growing opioid crisis, Family & Children’s Association (FCA) has partnered with Catholic Health Services (CHS) to offer “SHERPA” services to drug survivors and their families. The program is being piloted at CHS’s Good Samaritan Hospital Medical Center in West Islip and later rolled out to other CHS hospitals.

The press conference, held at Good Samaritan, included leading medical and health and human service professionals, announcing details of the pilot program that represents a first for emergency department care on Long Island.

SHERPA is a free service provided by FCA and is made up of peer recovery coaches trained to meet with overdose survivors and with their families in emergency departments. The team connects people to treatment, offers peer and family support and provides follow up. SHERPA is supported by NYS Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS), the NYS Senate and LI Community Foundation.

“When someone needs help, CHS should be ready and able to acutely care for them and then provide a warm handoff to definitive treatment,” said Patrick M. O’Shaughnessy, DO, MBA, FACEP, Executive Vice President and Chief Clinical Officer for CHS.

New York State Senator Phil Boyle concurred. “Those in the throes of addiction often battle alone. I applaud FCA and CHS for this partnership that will give surviving overdose addicts and their families an opportunity to get beyond a possibly overwhelming emergency department visit and connect them with a trained, caring individual who will guide them through treatment toward sobriety.  After a recent visit and tour of the Good Samaritan Emergency Department, I can’t think of a better inaugural location for the SHERPA program.  I am confident of its success and look forward to its expansion throughout Long Island and New York.”

“The SHERPA model has been used successfully in emergency departments across the country and up and down the East Coast, and this partnership with Catholic Health Services represents a first for Long Island,” said Dr. Jeffrey Reynolds, President/CEO, Family & Children’s Association.

“With thanks to the wonderful team of professionals at Catholic Health Services, we have every hope that this program can potentially make a huge and lasting difference in the lives of many individuals and families on Long Island,” Dr. Reynolds added.

SHERPA currently has 5 Peer Recovery Coaches and 6 Family Recovery Coaches from Thomas’ Hope Foundation who have been medically cleared to begin services. In SHERPA’s first month of operation, Peer Recovery Coaches have already engaged with 28 individuals at Good Samaritan.


About FCA

Family & Children’s Association is a not-for-profit agency helping more than 30,000 Long Islanders each year. For more than 130 years, the organization has worked to protect and strengthen vulnerable children, seniors, families and communities on Long Island.

About Good Samaritan Hospital Medical Center

Good Samaritan Hospital Medical Center, a member of Catholic Health Services, is a 537-bed (including 100 nursing home beds), not-for-profit hospital serving the communities on the south shore of Long Island in West Islip, New York. Good Samaritan’s high-quality medical services extend across the continuum of care to all disciplines, both for inpatients and outpatients.

About Catholic Health Services

Catholic Health Services of Long Island (CHS) is an integrated health care delivery system with some of the region’s finest health and human services agencies. CHS includes six hospitals, three skilled nursing facilities, a regional home nursing service, hospice and a multiservice, community-based agency for persons with special needs. Under the sponsorship of the Diocese of Rockville Centre, CHS serves hundreds of thousands of Long Islanders each year, providing care that extends from the beginning of life to helping people live their final years in comfort, grace and dignity. Learn more about CHS’s commitment to quality and about the services offered.


For Media Inquiries:

Marc Fernandez

Marketing/Communications Coordinator

Family & Children’s Association

516.746.0350 x1247


Chris Hendriks

VP, Public & External Affairs

Catholic Health Services


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2 thoughts on “A First for Long Island Family & Children's Association & Catholic Health Services Offer "SHERPA" Services to Overdose Survivors and their Families

  1. Patricia Gaffney says:

    how does someone who has an addict clear p there debt from being in a hospital and detox and now owe bills they cannot pay because they are an addict and are working to get better and get sober my son has overdosed three times and the second time was denied help in a catholic hospital st charles and the was treated and now is recieving bills he cannot pay is there some kind of charity he can get help to pay all the debts so he can move on with his future wife and two children they are homeless but live with us the grandparents of there chilldren

  2. Patricia,

    Thank you for your message. I encourage you to speak with a peer recovery coach from our SHERPA program stationed at THRIVE to help guide you and your family. The support is free and the number is 631-822-3396. Additionally, please take note of our 24-hour hotline 631-979-1700.

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