Policies & Peer Review Process
- General Submission Rules
- Rights for Authors, Copyright
- Conflict of Interest
- Human and Animal Rights
- Informed Consent
- Determination of Authorship
- Peer Review Policy and Process
- Plagiarism Policy
- Post-Publication Changes Policy
General Submission Rules
All material to be considered for publication in Advances in Clinical Medical Research and Healthcare Delivery (ACMRHD) should be submitted electronically via the journal's online submission system.
Anyone may submit an original article to be considered for publication in ACMRHD provided that the submitter owns the copyright to the work or is authorized by the copyright owner to submit the article, or if the work is not yet copyrighted. There are no fees to submit an article.
Submitted articles cannot have been previously published, nor can they be forthcoming in a journal or book. By submitting material to ACMRHD, the author stipulates that the material is not currently under review at another journal and that the author will not submit the material to another journal until the completion of the ACMRHD editorial decision process. For those manuscripts that are based on material that may have previously been presented in abstract or poster form, please ensure that the submitter is the copyright holder and can utilize the same material. If the submitter is not the copyright holder, they will need the permission of the copyright holder to re-use text from the abstract or poster.
Rights for Authors and Copyright
All articles published in ACMRHD are distributed with a Creative Commons CC BY-NC license. Under this license, authors hold the copyright to their work and have the right to share or adapt the article, as long as the author(s) and source are cited, and the use is for noncommercial purposes.
Conflict of Interest
When a researcher, author, editor, or reviewer has a financial/non-financial interest or belief that could affect their objectivity or inappropriately influence their actions, a potential conflict of interest exists. Such relationships are also known as dual commitments, competing interests, or competing loyalties.
ACMRHD, in accordance with the guidelines of the Association of American Medical Colleges, the Council of Science Editors, and the World Association of Medical Editors, requires authors to state all conflicting interests in relation to their work. At the time of submission, our form will prompt authors to list all financial and non-financial conflict of interest issues. Where authors have no conflicting interests, they should mention clearly with a statement such as, "I, ( ), on behalf of all the co-authors declare that (author(s)) have no conflict of interest with this manuscript". The Editor-In-Chief may ask for further information regarding conflicting interests. During the Peer-Review process, if any editor or reviewer identifies any interests that would conflict with their participation in the review process, they should inform the Editor-in-Chief immediately and their name will be excluded from the review team for that article. If the Editor-in-Chief identifies a conflict of interest that pertains to them personally, management of the manuscript will be immediately assigned to another member of the Editorial Board.
Conflicts of Interest relating to Financial Issues:
The conflicting interests related to financial issues include but are not limited to the following:
- Receiving reimbursements, fees, funding, or other monetary benefits from any organization or person that may in any way gain or lose financially from the publication of the manuscript, either now or in the future.
- Receiving reimbursements, fees, funding, or other monetary benefits from any organization or person that holds or has applied for patents relating to the content of the manuscript.
Conflicts of Interest relating to Non-Financial Issues:
The conflicting interests related to non-financial issues could include but are not limited to conflicts related to religion, academic and intellectual interests, or to personal opinion or ideologies.
Authors should ensure that publications are produced in a responsible and ethical manner. Authors working on any sponsored clinical trials or publications should declare such works under conflict of interest during submission.
The conflict of interest policies are formulated to ensure transparency and objectivity in the publications and peer-review process. If scholars are uncertain whether their concerns come under conflict-of-interest policies, please feel free to contact us at Advances@RochesterRegional.org.
Human and Animal Rights
ACMRHD has formulated policies to ensure protection and proper use of animals and humans in all forms of research. It is mandatory for the authors reporting experiments with the involvement of animals and human subjects to adhere to the following:
- The authors should include a statement in the "Methods" section of the article indicating that they have identified the related institutional and/or licensing committee and have taken approval from the committee for their experiments. They should also mention the address of the committee.
- The authors should declare that they have conducted all experiments in accordance with relevant guidelines and regulations of the committee.
- If an author performs experimental studies involving client-owned animals they must present an acceptance document from the client about best practices in animal testing. Field studies and other non-experimental research on animals must observe institutional, national, or international guidelines and wherever available should have been approved by an appropriate ethics committee.
- The authors involved in research and experiments involving human subjects must confirm that informed consent was obtained from all participants and/or their legal guardians.
The U.S. Public Health Service's Policy on Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals (PHS policy) and the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals describe general policies and procedures designed to ensure the humane and appropriate use of live vertebrate animals in all forms of medical research. ACMRHD finds the policies and procedures set forth in the PHS policy and the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals to be both necessary and sufficient to ensure a high standard of animal care. The researchers are expected to conduct their animal research in compliance with PHS policy.
ACMRHD asserts that researchers have a moral obligation towards the animals and human subjects they use for their research goals; they must treat them with compassion and consider their well-being while designing the projects.
The Editor-In-Chief will evaluate the submitted manuscripts on animal well-being issues and if the research is found to be inconsistent with commonly accepted norms of using the animal and human subjects, the manuscript is liable to be rejected. The Editor-In-Chief also reserves the right to contact the approving committee for any further clarification.
Informed consent is required for any research paper to be published in ACMRHD if that research involves human participants. Informed consent policy states that a participant in research must be informed about all aspects of the trial and the research should be carried out only when the participant voluntarily confirms his or her willingness to participate in a particular clinical trial and significance of the research for advancement of medical knowledge and social welfare. The concept of informed consent is embedded in the principles of Nuremberg Code, the Declaration of Helsinki and the Belmont Report.
Policies regarding informed consent involve the following postulates:
- Human participants' names and other identifiers must be removed from all sections of the manuscript, including supplementary information. Informed consent letters must be attained for the publication of any other information that could lead to identification of a participant, such as clinical images and videos. In the article's Methods section, the authors should include that informed consent to publish identifying information/images has been obtained. Please note that the use of colored bars/shapes to obscure the eyes/facial region of study participants is NOT an acceptable means of anonymization.
- Research involving human subjects, human material, or human data must have been performed in accordance with and must have been approved by an appropriate Institutional Review Board. A statement detailing this, and which includes the name of the ethics committee must appear in all manuscripts reporting such research. If a study has been granted an exemption from requiring ethics approval, this should also be detailed in the manuscript. Further information and documentation to support this should be made available to the Editor-In-Chief on request. Manuscripts may be rejected if the Editor-In-Chief considers that the research has not been carried out within an appropriate ethical framework.
- Authors reporting the use of a new procedure or tool in a clinical setting (for example as a technical advance or case report) must give a clear justification in the manuscript for why the new procedure or tool was deemed more appropriate than usual clinical practice to meet the patient's clinical need. Such justification is not required if the new procedure is already approved for clinical use at the authors' institution. In case of a novel procedure, authors are expected to obtain ethics committee approval and informed patient consent for any experimental use of a novel procedure or tool.
- For all research involving human subjects, informed consent to participate in the study should be obtained from participants or their parents/ legal guardians in case the participant is minor, and a statement to this effect should appear in the manuscript. A case report that does not include identifiable protected health information does not require written consent to be provided to the journal.
- For all manuscripts that include details, images, or videos relating to individual participants from which it is possible that identifying information could be gleaned, written informed consent for the publication of these must be obtained from the participants or their parents or legal guardians in case the participant is a minor, and a statement to this effect should appear in the manuscript.
- A photo of a pathology slide showing stained tumor cells would not need informed consent
- A side view video of a patient’s gait in which the whole body of the patient is visualized would need informed consent. .
- Substantial contributions to the conception or design of the work; or the acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data for the work; AND
- Drafting the work or revising it critically for important intellectual content; AND
- Final approval of the version to be published; AND
- Agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.
- Originality of the subject
- Methodological and ethical soundness
- Presentation of results
- How results support the author’s conclusions
- Appropriate review and reference of previous relevant work
- If the work meaningfully adds to the existing body of knowledge
- Encourage major revisions: reviewers are asked to choose this option if they believe that the authors have multiple technical and editorial issues that must be resolved to make the article acceptable for revision. Reviewers will be asked to re-review the revised article after revisions are submitted under the same procedure listed above
- Accept this article with minor (or no) revisions: the reviewer selects this option when they believe the article’s contents are acceptable on its technical and/or interpretational merits, but some changes may be needed prior to final acceptance. This can include minor edits or suggestions for additional discussion, but the reviewer doesn’t require a re-review prior to publication.
- Reject this article without an option to resubmit: this is typically chosen when the reviewer feels that the article has major technical and/or interpretational problems that cannot be resolved sufficiently. Reviewers will not be requested to re-review should the editor decide to allow the authors the opportunity to revise, unless the editor feels the authors have fully addressed the reasons for rejecting the original version of the article.
Examples for guidance to authors:
Determination of Authorship
ACMRHD follows the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) recommendations on defining the role of authors.
In brief ICMJE recommends that authorship be based on the following four criteria:
All contributors who do not meet the four ICMJE criteria for authorship should be listed in an 'Acknowledgements' section. This section might include a person who provided purely technical help or writing assistance, or any sort of general support in performing research.
ACMRHD strictly follows ICMJE and Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) guidelines and requires written confirmation from all authors that they agree with any proposed changes in authorship of submitted manuscripts or published articles. The corresponding author should ensure that all authors confirm and agree with the proposed changes. The Editor-In-Chief will not be responsible to resolve authorship disputes. The authorship of a published article can only be amended through publication of a request letter.
Peer Review Policy and Process
To ensure the excellence and academic rigor of our journal, each submission undergoes peer review. This process assesses the scientific accuracy and ethical treatment of research participants. All manuscripts are peer reviewed according to the procedures described here.
A member of the Editorial Board screens all new submissions. Submissions may be rejected because of methodological flaws, grammatical errors, poor English language, or because the subject matter is outside the aims and scope of the journal. The Editor will inform the author immediately if the manuscript is rejected.
If the manuscript passes this screening process, the Editor will assign it to at least two peer reviewers. If a member of the editorial board authors an article, that Editor is excluded from any phase of the peer review and decision-making process and another Editor is assigned to manage the submission.
With the exception of editorials, which do not undergo peer review, ACMRHD utilizes a “double blind” review method where the reviewers and the authors are anonymous to each other throughout the process.
Whenever possible, Editors assign reviewers to a manuscript based on their stated or known area of expertise.
Reviewers are required to consider:
Reviewers are not required to correct language issues but are welcome to offer feedback that will improve the language, grammar, and style of the manuscript. Reviewers will make a recommendation on the publication of the manuscript to the editorial board from among the following choices:
If desired, peer reviewers can provide a confidential cover letter or free text commentary that only editors will be able to read, even if their report is shared with the authors.
Before final acceptance, a member of the Editorial Board will review grammar and style and may apply corrections at this point. Additionally, all manuscripts undergo plagiarism screening by the Editorial Board before final acceptance; we do not expect peer reviewers to perform this action.
The typical time for the first round of peer review is about 30 days. This is dependent on the availability and responsiveness of reviewers. If the reviewers return conflicting recommendations, or a report is long overdue, the Editor may request an additional peer review opinion.
In rare instances where it is difficult to find a second reviewer for a manuscript, the Editor will determine if a single review is sufficient and make a decision to accept, reject, or request revision.
The final decision to accept or reject the manuscript is sent to the author along with the verbatim comments and recommendations made by the reviewers. Reviewers may also make confidential comments that will only be read by the Editor.
The Editor, on the basis of the advice of the peer reviewers, is responsible for the final decision to accept or reject the article.
ACMRHD utilizes the COPE definition of plagiarism, namely, “When somebody presents the work of others (data, words or theories) as if they were his/her own, and without proper acknowledgment.”
ACMRHD follows the COPE guidelines for investigation of potential plagiarism identified by reviewers or editors.
All manuscripts are screened prior to acceptance utilizing iThenticate (Turnitin, LLC., Oakland, CA).
Post-Publication Changes Policy
On rare occasions, after an article has been published and a DOI assigned, it may become necessary to make one or more changes to the published manuscript. All efforts will be made to ensure that changes are made in accordance with guidance from the Committee on Publication Ethics Post-publication discussions and corrections.
Any necessary changes will be accompanied with a post-publication notice which will be permanently linked to the original article so that readers will be fully informed of any necessary changes. This can be in the form of a correction notice, an expression of concern, a retraction, or in rare circumstances, a removal. The purpose of this mechanism of making changes which are permanent and transparent is to ensure the integrity of the scholarly record.
All correction, expressions of concern and retraction notices are free to access at the point of publication.