International Society for Neonatal Screening Honors Dr. Rodney Howell

Rodney Howell, M.D., whose work as a pediatric clinician, researcher and educator has touched the lives of children throughout the world, was honored recently by the International Society for Neonatal Screening (ISNS) for his contributions to the field.

Dr, Howell, who is chairman emeritus of the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine’s Department of Pediatrics, was recognized with the 2019 ISNS/PerkinElmer Robert Guthrie Award at the fourth ISNS Middle East-North Africa Regional Meeting, “Introducing and Expanding Newborn Screening in the MENA Region,” in Limassol, Cyprus, March 8-11.

Dr. Rodney Howell

“I was very honored to receive this award from the international society devoted exclusively to newborn screening,” said Dr. Howell. “This award is named in honor of Robert Guthrie, an American clinician-scientist who developed the technique more than 50 years ago that permits newborn screening as we perform it today.”

Dr. Howell, who served as ISNS president from 2016 to 2019, also moderated one of the sessions at the regional conference in Cyprus.

“This is impressive international recognition for Dr. Howell’s work to disseminate newborn screening and save babies with rare diseases,” said Judy Schaechter, M.D., M.B.A., the George E. Batchelor Endowed Chair in Child Health, chair of the Department of Pediatrics, and chief of service at Holtz Children's Hospital, Jackson Health System.

Board certified in pediatrics and in human biochemical genetics, Dr. Howell joined the Miller School of Medicine in 1989, and served as chair until 2003. Throughout his career, Dr. Howell has been deeply committed to the welfare of children. He played a key role in developing a uniform panel of newborn screening tests for genetic or functional conditions – a key public health accomplishment – and co-authored more than 150 research papers dealing with genetic and metabolic diseases.

Dr. Howell served as senior advisor to the director at the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (2004-2011), and was the founding chair of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary’s Advisory Committee on Heritable Disorders in Newborns and Children.

ISNS is recognized worldwide for its contributions to the detection of neonatal conditions and the prevention of their adverse outcomes through excellence in neonatal screening. Its mission is to enhance the quality of neonatal screening and medical services for neonatal and infant sicknesses and disorders, worldwide. ISNS has around 470 members in more than 70 countries.