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Santa Cruz
Women's Health Center

News and Events

Huffington PostSCWHC is Featured in The Huffington Post

We were featured in The Huffington Post for our enthusiastic efforts to educate our patients and sign them up with Obamacare. " Dr. [Maria] Mead gets straight to the heart of the ACA [Affordable Care Act] when she says 'We are empowering people to know that they are important.' " Read more

Affordable Care Act Partnership in Santa Cruz

The Santa Cruz Women’s Health Center (SCWHC), Dignity Health/Dominican Hospital (Dominican Hospital), Sutter Maternity & Surgery Center (SMSC) and the Palo Alto Medical Foundation (PAMF) have announced an unprecedented partnership that includes an almost $7 million collective investment to prepare our community for the 2014 implementation of healthcare reform through the Affordable Care Act.

SCWHC, currently located in downtown Santa Cruz, will be opening a second clinic in Live Oak at the East Cliff Village Shopping Center in 2014.

The Live Oak clinic will be a family health and pediatrics center offering primary care for women, men, and children. In addition to adding services for men, the new clinic will enable SCWHC to provide services for 1,600 low-income children currently served by the Dominican Hospital Pediatrics Clinic.

Read the complete article

"This Clinic Saved My Life"

An Open Letter from the Santa Cruz Women's Health Center
November 2012

Imagine that you’re an uninsured woman in your early 60s, a few years away from Medicare security.  Suddenly you start to get headaches so severe they wake you up at night and never seem to go away.  Soon the headaches are joined by jitters and nausea.  You’re terrified on many levels.  What could be wrong? And if something really is wrong, how on earth will you deal with it, since you don’t have health insurance, a job, or savings?

That’s the situation our patient Marie M. found herself in last spring.  Her care team at the Santa Cruz Women’s Health Center (SCWHC) was able to diagnose the cause of her headaches and nausea:  a brain tumor. Luckily, the tumor was benign—and removable.  But her care team did much more than address her physical symptoms and fears.  We enrolled her in a new County program to cover her medical bills, and we coordinated her care with a neurosurgeon who operated successfully on her tumor.  Marie was touched that her doctor called her at home to check on her. 

Read more about Marie, our new clinic in Live Oak, and our new services to men.

Please join us!  Your donation enables us to make our effective, caring approach available to Marie and others just like her.   Donate Now


Santa Cruz Women's Health Center Wins Federal Grant to Dramatically Improve Health Services for the County

June 27, 2012, Santa Cruz, CA – The Santa Cruz Women’s Health Center (SCWHC) recently received a $1.3 million federal New Access Point grant to help expand health care services in Santa Cruz County. The funding, announced on Wednesday June 20 by Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sibelius, is part of $128.6 million in Affordable Care Act (ACA) funds awarded to 219 health centers across the country.

The award provides $650,000 per year for two years (or about 17% of the organization’s annual budget) and is annually renewable thereafter. It will enable the clinic to expand its facilities to
serve about 2,000 additional low-income patients regardless of their ability to pay, including more patients who are homeless.

“This marks a pivotal moment for the Santa Cruz Women’s Health Center, which opened its doors nearly 40 years ago as a small, volunteer-led, women’s health collective,” said Glenys Davidson, Board President. “The new funding allows us to expand our services and mission in response to the increasing need for quality health care that is currently out of reach of thousands of local residents.”

Congressman Sam Farr, a long-time supporter of the clinic, said: “The Santa Cruz Women’s Health Center has long been a shining example of high quality community health care, especially for underserved residents. I am proud that the federal government is making such a meaningful investment in the Center." Read the complete press release


Reach Out and Read ® Program

The Santa Cruz Women's Health Center is proud to participate in the Reach Out and Read ® Program. Here's how it works. In the exam room, medical providers trained in the developmental strategies of early literacy encourage parents to read aloud to their young children, and offer age-appropriate tips. The pediatric primary care provider gives every child between the ages of six months and five years a new, developmentally appropriate children’s book to take home and keep. By building on the unique relationship between parents and medical providers, Reach Out and Read helps families and communities encourage early literacy skills so children enter school prepared for success in reading.

The Women’s Health Center has approximately 500 pediatric patients between the ages of six months and five years. This program allows us to give an average of two books per child per year at an annual cost of about $2,000. It’s easy to help:

Spread the word by inviting others to join the cause and donate.

Help children grow up healthy and with a love of reading!


Video: Invisible Health Care in Santa Cruz County

Please watch the video above to earn more about the need for services like those provided by the Santa Cruz Women's Health Center. “Invisible Health Care” is a short film about the Safety Net Coalition of Santa Cruz County (SNCC). We are a member of the SNCC, which works to improve health status and access for Santa Cruz County residents who receive care through publicly-funded programs such as Medi-Cal and Healthy Families, and for the uninsured.

Clinic leaders work together through the SNCC to develop solutions to address common challenges, coordinate care, share expertise and best practices and improve quality of care. The Coalition is committed to working collaboratively to achieve comprehensive accessible health care and improved outcomes for everyone in the County.

Updated March 21, 2014


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