Companion Content

Dr. Steven Perlman

In the 1990s, Dr. Steve Perlman and Eunice Kennedy Shriver met in Washington, D.C. to discuss the lack of access to health care for people with intellectual disabilities, who were often denied treatment by doctors and health-care systems. From those initial talks, Dr. Perlman created Special Olympics Special Smiles to provide free dental screenings for Special Olympics athletes. Today, this is one of eight disciplines offered by Special Olympics Healthy Athletes, a program that offers free health screenings to Special Olympics athletes worldwide. Meet Dr. Perlman and the athletes who are thriving today, thanks to this life-saving intervention.