By Mary Thurwachter
Palm Beach Post Staff Writer
Posted: 3:32 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 22, 2011
Steven Charlap’s favorite quote:
‘Chance favors the prepared mind.’- Louis Pasteur
The beginnings of the double chin he had then and his acid reflux are gone.
He doesn’t have high cholesterol anymore, and the osteoarthritis in his hip has lessened to the point where he can run – something he hasn’t done in decades.
“I believe what I have done is so logical,” he said. And none of it called for drugs.
“I’m starting a health care revolution, and I view myself as a Johnny Appleseed of sorts,” said Charlap, founder and chief service officer of MDPrevent, a preventive medicine clinic based on the campus of Delray Medical Center.
The health care services and education company helps people reduce health care costs, stay healthy and enjoy a life well-lived through free annual wellness visits (paid 100 percent by Medicare for seniors) or self-paid Total Health Assessments and the development of a five- to 10-year prevention plan.
“With two out of three Americans overweight and 34 percent obese with the number expected to climb to 40 percent by 2015, and with seven out of 10 deaths each year caused by preventable chronic diseases, we can’t sustain our health care system at this pace,” he said.
But there is good news, Charlap adds. “As the Centers for Disease Control states on its website, ‘the evidence for the power of prevention is now indisputable.’ Medicare has finally realized that ‘an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure’ and has begun funding preventive measures.”The goal is to wean people off unnecessary medications, lose unhealthy weight and lower blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol by giving people the knowledge, support, guidance and encouragement they need to take back control of their health and their lives. That will let them live more good years because, as Charlap says,
It’s not about reading labels, he said. “It’s about eating food that doesn’t have labels.”
Born in Israel, Charlap’s family emigrated to the United States in 1959. He grew up in Brooklyn with his father, a rabbi, his mother, a Hebrew school teacher, and two older brothers, one a lawyer and the other a doctor.
Previously, Charlap founded and was CEO of HealthDrive, a national health care company that treated more than 5 million seniors over two decades.
He sold the company to a private equity firm in 2008.
“I was raised to believe that to do well one must do good,” Charlap said. “Having done well, and after careful study of the preventive medicine and wellness field, I now believe to be well, one must do good.”
Education: Master’s in business from Harvard; medical degree from New York University; bachelor’s in speech and drama from Yeshiva University.
Personal: Married for 27 years to Yael, an artist. They live in Boca Raton and have three children ages 17-25.
Hobbies: “Coaching high school and middle school basketball, watching my daughter play sports, reading and watching movies.”
Career highlight: “Founding and growing HealthDrive, a national health care company that treated more than
5 million seniors over two decades. But I hope my career highlight is still ahead of me. I’m starting a health care revolution.”