The DVHC one pager provides background on the vision and development of the DVHC-OC as well as significant achievements. To read the DVHC One Pager click here.


The OCWHP participated on a statewide Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) and Health Policy Leadership Committee facilitated by Futures Without Violence, which produced three policy briefs in September 2018. 


The OCWHP is excited to release our new Policy Brief analyzing the mental health and substance abuse service needs of domestic violence survivors in Orange County. 

The publication of this brief marks the conclusion of a yearlong Needs Assessment and is part of a four-year countywide initiative to strengthen the healthcare sector’s response to domestic violence and improve access to and facilitate delivery of services for domestic violence survivors.

In addition to assessing the current landscape and barriers to serving domestic violence survivors, our new Policy Brief issues a three-part set of recommendations on how to bridge gaps in services and ensure that local survivors’ needs are being met.

This collective effort was done in partnership with members of the Domestic Violence and Health Collective - Orange County (DVHC-OC), the Health and Domestic Violence Task Force, and several local health care and social service providers. A special thank you to everyone who participated in this process!


In 2011, the Orange County Women's Health Project (OCWHP) convened a coalition of over 60 local women's health stakeholders to begin addressing gaps in women's health needs in Orange County. The group reviewed approximately 200 data sets from national, state, and local sources and assembled a set of 40 Women's Health Indicators for Orange County women.  While analyzing the data, the OCWHP and its coalition partners identified four priority health issues affecting women across the county - issues that were affecting a great number of women in Orange County; issues for which local women were not doing as well as their peers or against established benchmarks; and issues which were not otherwise being addressed collaboratively in the county which had policy potential. The OCWHP presented these findings at the inaugural Orange County Women's Health Policy Summit and in 2014, the OCWHP and its Task Forces authored four Policy Briefs on each priority health issue.

These four priority health issues for Orange County women are: 

Breast Cancer - In Orange County, low-income women and women of racial/ethnic minorities are not getting screened for breast cancer at the recommended rates in Orange County(CHIS 2015). In addition, breast cancer has been the leading cause of cancer death among women age 20-39 years (OC Affiliate of Susan G. Komen 2009), and until late 2016, low-income women under 40 were not eligible for publicly funded diagnostic breast services. To make matters worse, Orange County does not have a county hospital, which would normally serve as a provider of last resort for low-income individuals. Read the Breast Cancer Policy Brief.

Cervical Cancer - In Orange County, Hispanic women are dying at a higher rate (3.47 per 100,000) than their peers and the national rate (California Cancer Registry, CDC 2010), and fewer women of racial/ethnic minorities get screened compared to the county average (CHIS 2007). Moreover, HPV vaccination, which prevents most forms of cervical cancer, has yet to be fully utilized in Orange County. Read the Cervical Cancer Policy Brief.

Domestic Violence (DV) - Consistent with state and national rates, 26.3% of Orange County women report having experienced physical or sexual violence by an intimate partner (CHIS 2009). Domestic violence causes significant short- and long-term health consequences for the victim and exposed children, imposes heavy costs on the healthcare system, and interferes with workplace productivity (ACOG Committee Opinion 2012). However, most of the major hospital and health systems in Orange County do not consistently screen or counsel for domestic violence, nor do they employ a consistent approach to referring patients for domestic violence services. Read the Health and Domestic Violence Policy Brief.

Teen Reproductive Health (TRH) - Certain pockets of Orange County experience significantly higher teen birth rates than the county, state and even national averages (Annual Report on Conditions of Children in Orange County 2013). In addition, the combined cases of syphilis, gonorrhea and chlamydia nationwide hit an all-time high in 2015, and Orange County's percentage increase is the most significant of all Southern California counties. (Orange County Register, January 24, 2017, citing Centers for Disease Control and California Department of Public Health.) Indeed, the sexually transmitted infection (STI) rate among Orange County adolescents ages 10-17 has increased by 24% over the last decade, and young females had approximately four times the number of chlamydia cases as young males (Annual Report on Conditions of Children in Orange County 2013). Read the Teen Reproductive Health Policy Brief.