Policies

Peer Review Policy

All new submissions are screened for completeness and adherence to the Guide for Authors. Those that pass are then assigned to Medical Editor for consideration for sending for peer review. Result of manuscripts initial evaluation stage will be informed as soon as possible.

Manuscripts rejected at this stage are insufficiently original, be plagiarized, have serious conceptual and/or methodological flaws, have poor grammar or English language, or are outside the aims and scope of the journal.

Reviewers are matched to the paper according to their expertise. This journal uses double-blind peer review process by at least two reviewers.

Please note that as part of the submission process you may be asked to provide the names of a number of peers who could be called upon to review your manuscript. Recommended reviewers should be experts in their fields and should be able to provide an objective assessment of the manuscript. Please be aware of any conflicts of interest when recommending reviewers. Examples of conflicts of interest include (but are not limited to) the below:

           •    The reviewer should have no prior knowledge of your submission.
               The reviewer should not have recently collaborated with any of the authors.
              Reviewer nominees from the same institution as any of the authors are not permitted.

Please note that the journal’s editors are not obliged to invite any recommended/opposed reviewers to assess your manuscript.

Authorship

For authors submitting to technical or medical journals, papers should only be submitted for consideration once consent is given by all contributing authors. Those submitting papers should carefully check that all those whose work contributed to the paper are acknowledged as contributing authors.

The list of authors should include all those who can legitimately claim authorship. This is all those who:

           •    Made a substantial contribution to the concept and design, acquisition of data or analysis and interpretation of data.
           •    Drafted the article or revised it critically for important intellectual content.
           •    Approved the version to be published.

Authors should meet the conditions of all of the points above. Each author should have participated sufficiently in the work to take public responsibility for appropriate portions of the content.

When a large, multicentre group has conducted the work, the group should identify the individuals who accept direct responsibility for the manuscript. These individuals should fully meet the criteria for authorship.

Acquisition of funding, collection of data, or general supervision of the research group alone does not constitute authorship, although all contributors who do not meet the criteria for authorship should be listed in the Acknowledgments section. Please refer to the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) authorship guidelines for more information on authorship.

Research Ethics and Patient Concent

Medical research involving human subjects must be conducted according to the World Medical Association Declaration of Helsinki

Submitted manuscripts should conform to the ICMJE Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals, and all papers reporting animal and/or human studies must state in the methods section that the relevant Ethics Committee or Institutional Review Board provided (or waived) approval. Please ensure that you have provided the full name and institution of the review committee, in addition to the approval number.

For research articles, authors are also required to state in the methods section whether participants provided informed consent and whether the consent was written or verbal.

Information on informed consent to report individual cases or case series should be included in the manuscript text. A statement is required regarding whether written informed consent for patient information and images to be published was provided by the patient(s) or a legally authorized representative.

Please also refer to the ICMJE Recommendations for the Protection of Research Participants

All research involving animals submitted for publication must be approved by an ethics committee with oversight of the facility in which the studies were conducted.

Clinical Trials

Our journals conform to the ICMJE requirement that clinical trials are registered in a WHO-approved public trials registry at or before the time of first patient enrolment as a condition of consideration for publication. The trial registry name and URL, and registration number must be included at the end of the abstract.

Further to the above, our journals may consider retrospectively registered trials if the justification for late registration is acceptable, consistent with the AllTrials campaign. The trial registry name and URL, and registration number must be included at the end of the abstract.

Reporting Guidelines

The relevant EQUATOR Network reporting guidelines should be followed depending on the type of study. For example, all randomized controlled trials submitted for publication should include a completed Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials (CONSORT) flow chart as a cited figure, and a completed CONSORT checklist as a supplementary file.

Other resources can be found at NLM’s Research Reporting Guidelines and Initiatives