Cure SMA is pleased to announce that South Carolina is now screening babies born in the state for spinal muscular atrophy (SMA). South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) officials shared the exciting news with Cure SMA in a written statement earlier today:

Good news! The new multiplex PCR based method for screening of both Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) with Severe Combined Immunodeficiency (SCID) will begin on Monday,  9/26/2022.

“Every state action to implement newborn screening of SMA is significant, but this one is special as it occurs during the final days of Newborn Screening Awareness Month,” said Cure SMA President Kenneth Hobby. “Congratulations to South Carolina on this important accomplishment and to the many South Carolina Cure SMA supporters who helped advocate for it in the state.”

“Today’s action means that the roughly 55,000 babies born each year in South Carolina will now be screened for SMA, and those that are detected with SMA through newborn screening will have the best chance of success, thanks to the early diagnosis and early access to treatment,” said Dr. Mary Schroth, Cure SMA Chief Medical Officer.

With the South Carolina action, more than 98 percent of all U.S. newborns are screened for SMA. Only Nevada and Hawaii (along with the District of Columbia) remain as non-screening states since the federal government recommended SMA screening in 2018. “Cure SMA’s advocacy work continues until every baby born in the U.S. is screened for SMA,” said Maynard Friesz, Vice President of Advocacy for Cure SMA.

For more information about the importance of newborn screening, go to: https://www.curesma.org/newborn-screening-for-sma/. To learn more about Cure SMA Advocacy, go to: https://www.curesma.org/advocacy/.