Issue 2 - October 2015
Greetings from the Orange County Women’s Health Project!
October is a big month for women’s health; it’s both Domestic Violence Awareness Month and Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  Please show your support by wearing purple and pink, reviewing our Policy Briefs to learn about local DV and breast cancer needs and solutions, and participating in the many upcoming campaigns to raise awareness and funds for these important causes. 
Thanks to the generosity of Blue Shield of California Foundation, the OCWHP is leading an innovative four-year project to establish a countywide, integrated and collaborative Health & Domestic Violence System in Orange County.  In June, we awarded four sub-grants to implement a set of key strategies that were recommended by local stakeholders to create this system.  They include:
STRATEGY 1 - Cross-Disciplinary Training (CDT) programs for healthcare & social service providers - Human Options (on behalf of the state-funded domestic violence organizations in Orange County) and UC Irvine are jointly leading this effort to develop a multi-disciplinary curriculum and deliver trainings for providers at healthcare sites throughout the county.  CDT will explain why and how to screen and counsel for domestic violence, how to make referrals, how to document, mandatory reporting, possible sources of reimbursement, creating institutional support for screening and counseling, and practical strategies for real-world application. 
STRATEGY 2 - Central Clearinghouse - 211OC will serve as the “central clearinghouse” for linking the community to domestic violence specific resources.  Funds will be used to expand and update the domestic violence resources in 211 OC’s existing database, create a dedicated domestic violence webpage with additional information (such as safety plan checklists, training videos, etc.), and enhance 211 OC’s ability to provide warm transfers to callers seeking domestic violence assistance.
STRATEGY 3 - Public Health Campaign – Community Service Programs (CSP) will develop a campaign using traditional large media (bus ads, billboards, TV, etc.), print (posters and wallet cards) and social media to raise awareness among the public that domestic violence affects your health and help is available from your healthcare provider, and to reduce the stigma associated with domestic violence.  CSP will develop tailored ads for low-income, perinatal, and LGTBQ populations due to their high risk for domestic violence. 
The Health & Domestic Violence Task Force will meet on Tuesday November 10, 2015 at 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm.  New members are welcome; please click here to be added to the e-mail distribution list.
Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) is the most common sexually transmitted infection in the United States and is associated with most forms of cervical cancer in women as well as mouth and throat cancers in men.  Recently the FDA approved a new HPV Vaccine (Gardasil 9), which has the potential to prevent approximately 90% of cervical cancers, as well as many vulvar, vaginal, and anal cancers. Nevertheless, HPV vaccination rates remain low, with only 39.7% of female adolescents and 21.6% of male adolescents completing the three-dose series in the U.S.  While routine immunization is recommended for all adolescents as early as age 11, completion of the 3-dose series is lower when compared to tetanus-diphtheria-acellular pertussis (Tdap) and meningococcal conjugate (MenACWY) vaccines.  To read more about HPV Vaccination Uptake, please click here.
The OCWHP is currently working with our partners and the Breast & Cervical Cancer Task Force to improve HPV vaccination uptake in Orange County.  There is significant opportunity in our community to inform parents and young adults about the vaccine as well as to encourage providers to discuss the HPV vaccine with their patients.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the risk of HPV cancers in communities of color is higher due to health disparity factors including socioeconomic status and limited access to healthcare services.  These and other factors create barriers for minorities to prevent, screen for, and overcome the burden of cancer.  However, HPV vaccination can decrease HPV cancer rates and help to improve the health of both men and women in communities of color across the country.  To read more about HPV in communities of color, please click here.  
In recognition of National Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15 to October 15), the CDC has highlighted opportunities to address issues that impact the health of Hispanic women.  In 2012, Hispanic women had the highest rate of getting cervical cancer, and were the second most likely to die of cervical cancer.  To read more about how to Improve Hispanic Women’s Health, please click here.
Assembly Bill 329 – The California Healthy Youth Act was signed by Governor Brown on October 1, 2015.  The measure was introduced by Assembly Member Shirley Weber (79th - San Diego) to update, strengthen, and integrate existing statutes relating to HIV/AIDS prevention and comprehensive sexual health education.  The bill will ensure students are educated about sexually transmitted infections and unintended pregnancy, as well as inform them about local health resources and the benefit of delaying sexual activity.  Thank you to our partner Planned Parenthood of Orange & San Bernardino Counties for mobilizing local support for this important legislation.  
The OCWHP will host our first fundraiser, a Comedy Night on Thursday November 5, 2015 at The Port Theater in Corona del Mar.  This will be an exciting event, in the midst of election season, featuring clever political satire, music, and humor by the inimitable Katie Goodman.  Tickets are $100 or VIP $150, which includes an exclusive after-party with Katie Goodman.  To purchase tickets and/or to sponsor the event, please visit:
20th Anniversary Celebration on Saturday November 14

In 1995, CalOptima began serving 180,000 Orange County residents with Medi-Cal.  Over the past two decades that number has grown to more than 750,000 members.  Their growth and success as a public agency and health plan is a testament to the value of partnerships with members, providers, the community, and elected officials.
CalOptima will commemorate the occasion with a 20th Anniversary Health & Wellness Community Event.  The event will take place on Saturday, November 14, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at CalOptima in Orange.  The event will feature: 
  • Health and wellness booths; 
  • Community resources for low-income families; 
  • No-cost health screenings and information; and 
  • Entertainment from local community partners reflecting the diversity of CalOptima’s membership. 
We encourage your organization to come join this celebration event.  Please contact Claudia Hernandez, Manager of Community Relations, at (714) 347-3262 or via e-mail at for more information

Thank you for your continued support and interest in the Orange County Women's Health Project.  If you have questions or wish to get more involved, please contact our office at (714) 619-8419.
Allyson W. Sonenshine, JD
OCWHP Project Director
Dena J. Rubin, MPH
OCWHP Project Manager
Annette C. Valenzuela, MA
OCWHP Project Assistant
(714) 619-8419 /
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Orange County Women's Health Project
1505 E. 17th Street, Suite 101
Santa Ana, CA 92705

(714) 619-8419