From the Society

Focus on science, not format

How JHM is improving the author experience


 

“No hassle” new manuscript submission process

Many authors have experienced the frustration of formatting a manuscript for submission to a medical journal. The process is time consuming and each journal has different requirements. This means that if you decide to submit your manuscript to one journal and later decide that another journal is a better fit, you may spend an hour (or several hours) reformatting to meet the new journal’s unique requirements.

Dr. Samir S. Shah of Cincinnati Children's Hospital

Dr. Samir S. Shah

To allow authors to spend more time on what matters to them, we’re pleased to introduce our “No Hassle” process for initial original research and brief report manuscript submissions to the Journal of Hospital Medicine. Our goal is to eliminate unnecessary and burdensome steps in the manuscript submission process. Thus, we have relaxed formatting requirements for initial manuscript submissions. Any conventional and readable manuscript format and reference style is acceptable.

Tables and figures can be embedded in the main document file or uploaded individually, depending on your preference. Funding and disclosures should be included on the title page but there is no need to submit completed disclosure or copyright forms unless we request a manuscript revision.

Timely decisions

We have all experienced the agony of waiting months on end for a journal to make a decision about our manuscript. The review process itself can take many months (or even longer). Furthermore, a manuscript may not be published for many more months (or even longer) following acceptance. At the Journal of Hospital Medicine, we commit to making timely decisions and publishing your accepted manuscript as fast as we can.

We currently reject approximately half of all original research and brief report manuscript submissions without formal peer review. We do this for two reasons. First, we want to ensure that we’re not overburdening our peer reviewers so we only ask them to review manuscripts that we are seriously considering for publication. Second, we want to ensure that we’re being respectful of our authors’ time. If we are unlikely to publish a manuscript based on lower priority scores assigned by me, as editor-in-chief, or other journal editors, we don’t want to subject your manuscript to a lengthy peer review, but would rather return the manuscript to you quickly for timely submission elsewhere.

Here are data that support our timely decision making:

  • 1.3 days = our average time from manuscript submission to rejection without formal peer review (median, less than one day).
  • 23 days = our average time from manuscript submission to first decision for manuscripts sent for peer review.

We also are working to improve our time to publication. Our goal is to publish accepted manuscripts within 120 days from initial submission to publication, and within 60 days from acceptance to publication.

Dissemination

Finally, little public knowledge is gleaned from medical research unless the study is published and widely read. The Journal of Hospital Medicine is at the leading edge of helping authors disseminate their work to a broader audience. Of course, we produce press releases and distribute those to many media outlets in partnership with the Society of Hospital Medicine. We also leverage social media to promote your article through tweets, visual abstracts, and, more recently, comics or graphic medicine abstracts. Some articles are even discussed on #JHMChat, our twitter-based journal club. This work is led by our exceptional Digital Media Editors, Dr. Vineet Arora (@FutureDocs), Dr. Charlie Wray (@WrayCharles), and Dr. Grace Farris (@gracefarris).

In summary, we are committed to making the Journal of Hospital Medicine even more author friendly. To that end, we’re making it easy for authors to submit their work, making timely disposition decisions, and facilitating dissemination of the work we publish.

Dr. Shah is chief metrics officer and director of the division of hospital medicine at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. He is the current editor-in-chief of the Journal of Hospital Medicine.

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