To comply with public health regulations re: the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), the OCWHP has converted the 8th Orange County Women’s Health Summit from an in-person one-day conference to a Virtual Four-Part Series.


The 8th OC Women’s Health Summit, a four-part virtual series, will address the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on women’s health and wellness across the lifespan.


The COVID-19 pandemic is producing serious consequences for women’s health and will exacerbate existing gender-based disparities. From childhood to older adulthood, girls and women may experience health conditions, diseases, barriers, and inequities differently than boys and men. In a four-part Zoom series, the 8th Summit will highlight the emerging research and evolving conditions that exemplify these differences and will address how the COVID-19 pandemic is impacting women’s health and wellness in the short and possibly long-term.  

Collectively, attendees will improve their understanding of the issues and policies impacting women’s health during the COVID-19 pandemic and how to better serve clients and the community in order to improve access and health outcomes for women in Orange County.  Attendees will virtually join a diverse group of stakeholders to share best practices and resources.



SESSION #1 – COVID-19, Women's Health and Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs)

Friday, May 29 from 9:00 AM - 11:30 AM 

Introductions – Allyson W. Sonenshine, JD

Founding Director, Orange County Women’s Health Project

Welcome – Congressman Harley Rouda

48th Congressional District of California

Keynote Address – COVID-19 and Women’s Health – Judy Belk

President & CEO, The California Wellness Foundation

Panel – COVID-19 and Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs)

The Science of ACEs – Anne H. Light, MD

Medical Director, Orange County Social Services Agency

ACEs Aware – Eric Ball, MD, FAAP

Pediatrician, CHOC Children's

Immediate Past President, American Academy of Pediatrics - Orange County

Moderator:  Dena J. Rubin, MPH

Program Manager, Orange County Women’s Health Project

SESSION #2 – COVID-19 and Sexual Health

Wednesday, June 3 from 9:00 AM - 11:30 AM


Welcome & Introductions – Allyson W. Sonenshine, JD

Founding Director, Orange County Women’s Health Project


Panel – COVID-19 & Sexual Health


The County Response – Helene Calvet, MD

Deputy Health Officer (Retired), Orange County Health Care Agency

Adapting Sexual & Reproductive Healthcare – Betha Schnelle, MPH, MBA

COO, Planned Parenthood of Orange and San Bernardino Counties

LGBTQ Access – Michelle J. Sherman, RPh, APh, FASCP, FACA, AAHIVP

Advanced Practice Pharmacist, Radiant Health Centers

Sexual Health Education and Services for Seniors – Joyce Swaving, CHES

Certified Health Educator, Shanti OC

Moderator:  DeVera Heard, EdD

Principal/Administrator (Retired), Santa Ana Unified School District

Advisory Board, Orange County Women’s Health Project

SESSION #3 – COVID-19 and Women’s Health Policy Implications

Wednesday, June 10 from 9:00 AM - 11:00 AM 

Welcome & Introductions – Allyson W. Sonenshine, JD

Founding Director, Orange County Women’s Health Project


Panel – COVID-19 and Women’s Health Policy Implications

Allyson W. Sonenshine, JD

Founding Director, Orange County Women’s Health Project

Mona Shah, JD, MPH

Health Policy Consultant

Policy Advisor, Orange County Women’s Health Project

SESSION #4 – COVID-19 and Mental Health

Wednesday, June 17 from 9:00 AM - 11:15 AM 

Welcome & Introductions – Allyson W. Sonenshine, JD
Founding Director, Orange County Women’s Health Project


Panel – COVID-19 and Mental Health

Perinatal Mental Health – Diana Ramos, MD, MPH

President, Orange County Medical Association

Incoming Chair, American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists - California

Be Well OC – a Mental Health System of Care – Clayton Chau, MD, PhD

Chief Clinical and Strategy Officer, Mind OC

Seniors and Caregivers – Susan Zajfen, RN

Community Liaison, Council on Aging – Southern California  

Moderator:  Gail Dratch, MSW

Mental Health Specialist, Orange County Women’s Health Project


CALL FOR ABSTRACTS – Deadline extended to May 1

Abstract Guidelines: Abstracts submitted for virtual poster presentations at the Summit should feature research, pilot programs, needs assessments, data analyses, and/or innovative preventive/intervention strategies addressing women’s health across the lifespan, including programs and/or research addressing COVID-19.


Due to the change in format (from in-person to online), poster presenters are no longer required to develop academic posters. Instead, presenters will develop 3 PowerPoint slides accompanied by a 5-minute pre-recorded audio presentation. You may record your audio inside of PPT or on a separate file. Presentations will be posted to the online Summit portal along with title, presenter and author information, abstract and references.


Who Should Submit:

  • Health care, social service, and behavioral health providers
  • Health systems and policy leaders
  • Researchers, evaluators and academics​
  • ​Educators
  • Foundations/Health funders
  • Community Based Organizations
  • G​raduate Students

Submission Deadline: Abstracts must be submitted by Friday, May 1, 2020 at 5:00 p.m. PST. Abstracts that do not follow APA format, or that are submitted after the deadline cannot be considered. Acceptances will be released on a rolling basis.

Submit an Abstract:


CEUs: CEUs for CHES, Nursing and LCSW, LMFT, LPCC and LEP will be provided.  More info TBA. 

Registration:  Registration will be free and open to the public.  Registration will open early May. 

Zoom: Summit sessions will be presented on Zoom. Upon registering for a session, participants will receive a link to join the Zoom meeting at the designated date and time.  We suggest participants download a free, Basic Zoom subscription in advance of the Summit. 

Questions & Technical Assistance: Contact Program and Events Coordinator, Sydney Minchin, at (714) 516-8263 or