|International Journal of Medicine in Developing Countries|
GUIDE FOR AUTHORS
- General information
- Types of manuscripts and limitations
- Authorship criteria
- Online Submission
- Manuscript submission and arrangement
- Artwork and illustrations guidelines
- File formatting
- Ethical Responsibilities of Authors
- Compliance with ethical standards
- Research involving humans and/or animals
- Post acceptance
1. General information
Announcements of conferences, meetings, courses, awards and other news items likely to be of interest to the readers should be emailed with the name and address of the person from whom additional information can be obtained. Up to 100 words only.
The contributors are required to provide names of three qualified reviewers who have had experience in the subject of the submitted manuscript, but who are not affiliated with the same institutes as the contributor/s.
Language and grammar
Uniformly American English.
2. Types of Manuscripts and Limits
- Original articles: Randomized controlled trials, intervention studies, studies of screening and diagnostic test, outcome studies, cost effectiveness analyses, case-control series, and surveys with high response rate, basic research and technology research.
- Review articles: Reviews should be systemic critical assessments of literature and data sources. Generally, Reviews are accepted by invitation only.
- Case reports: New/interesting/very rare cases can be reported. Cases with clinical significance or implications will be given priority, whereas, mere reporting of a rare case may not be considered.
- Letter to the Editor: It should be short, decisive observation. They should not be preliminary observations that need a later paper for validation.
Types of Manuscripts
250 words, structured
250 words, unstructured
200 words, structured
Letter to editor
3. Authorship Criteria
Authorship credit should be based only on substantial contributions
- to conception and design or acquisition of data or analysis and interpretation of data;
- drafting the article or revising it critically for important intellectual content; and
- final approval of the version to be published.
Conditions 1, 2, and 3 must all be met. Participation solely in the acquisition of funding or the collection of data does not justify authorship.
General supervision of the research group is not sufficient for authorship.
Each contributor should have participated sufficiently in the work to take public responsibility for appropriate portions of the content.
The order of naming the contributors should be based on the relative contribution of the contributor towards the study and writing the manuscript.
Once submitted the order cannot be changed without written consent of all the contributors.
For a study from in a single institute, the number of contributors should not exceed six. For a case-report, images, letter to the editor and review article the number of contributors should not exceed four. A justification should be included if the number of contributors exceeds these limits.
Only those who have done substantial work in a particular field can write a review article. A short summary of the work done by the contributor(s) in the field of review should accompany the manuscript. The journal expects the contributors to give post-publication updates on the subject of review. The update should be brief, covering the advances in the field after the publication of article and should send a letter to editor when major development occurs in the field.
Contributors should provide a description of what each of them contributed towards the manuscript. Description should be divided in following categories, as applicable: concepts, design, definition of intellectual content, literature search, clinical studies, experimental studies, data acquisition, data analysis, statistical analysis, manuscript preparation, manuscript editing and manuscript review. One or more author should take responsibility of the integrity of the work as a whole from inception to published article and should be designated as ‘guarantor’.
4. Online Submission
Please follow the hyperlink “Submit a Manuscript” on the website and upload all of your manuscript files following the instructions given on the screen.
5. Manuscript Submission and Arrangement
Submission of a manuscript implies: that the work described has not been published before; that it is not under consideration for publication anywhere else; that its publication has been approved by all co-authors (if any) as well as by the responsible authorities – tacitly or explicitly – at the institute where the work has been carried out. The publisher will not be held legally responsible should there be any claims for compensation.
Authors wishing to include figures, tables or content that have already been published elsewhere are required to obtain permission from the copyright owner(s) for both the print and online format and to include evidence that such permission has been granted when submitting their papers. Any material received without such evidence will be assumed to originate from the authors.
The title page should include:
- The name(s) of the author(s)
- A concise and informative title along with short/running title and type of the article
- The affiliation(s) and address(es) of the author(s)
- The e-mail address and telephone number(s) of the corresponding author
- If available, the 16-digit ORCID of the author(s)
Please provide a structured (Background, Methodology, Results, Conclusion) abstract of up to 250 words. Methods section should be replaced by “Case Presentation” for case reports. The abstract should not contain any undefined abbreviations or unspecified references.
Please provide 4 to 6 keywords which can be used for indexing purposes. For case reports; the word ‘case report’ should be added in keywords.
Manuscripts should be submitted in Word.
- Use a normal, plain font (e.g., 12-point Times New Roman) for text with double line spacing.
- Use the automatic page numbering function to number the pages.
- Do not use field functions.
- Use tab stops or other commands for indents, not the space bar.
- Use the table function, not spreadsheets, to make tables.
- Use the equation editor or MathType for equations.
- Save your file in docx format (Word 2007 or higher) or doc format (older Word versions).
Please use no more than three levels of displayed headings. For Review Articles, umber headings as in APA format. It makes it easy to distinguish between the main heading and sub-headings.
Abbreviations should be defined at first mention and used consistently thereafter. A list of abbreviations must be provided at the end of the manuscript (not required for Letter to Editor).
Footnotes and endnotes are not acceptable.
Acknowledgments of people, grants, funds, etc. should be placed in a separate section on the title page. The names of funding organizations should be written in full.
When possible, quantify findings and present them with appropriate indicators of measurement error or uncertainty (such as confidence intervals). Report losses to observation (such as dropouts from a clinical trial). Put a general description of methods in the Methods section. When data are summarized in the Results section, specify the statistical methods used to analyze them. Avoid non-technical uses of technical terms in statistics, such as ‘random’ (which implies a randomizing device), ‘normal’, ‘significant’, ‘correlations’ and ‘sample’. Define statistical terms, abbreviations and most symbols. Use upper italics (P 0.048). For all P values include the exact value and not less than 0.05 or 0.001.
Subjects and Methods (or Material and Methods)
The Methods section should include only information that was available at the time the plan or protocol for the study was written; all information obtained during the conduct of the study belongs to the Results section.
Selection and Description of Participants
Describe your selection of the observational or experimental participants or materials (patients or laboratory animals, including controls) clearly, including eligibility and exclusion criteria and a description of the source population. Because the relevance of such variables as age and sex to the object of research is not always clear, authors should explain their use when they are included in a study report; for example, authors should explain why only subjects of certain ages were included or why women were excluded or why particular materials were included or excluded.
The guiding principle should be clarity about how and why a study was done in a particular way. When authors use variables such as race or ethnicity, they should define how they measured the variables and justify their relevance.
Technical information: Identify the methods, apparatus (give the manufacturer’s name and address in parentheses) and procedures in sufficient detail to allow other workers to reproduce the results. Give references to established methods, including statistical methods (see above); provide references and brief descriptions for methods that have been published but are not well known; describe new or substantially modified methods, give reasons for using them and evaluate their limitations. Identify precisely all drugs and chemicals used, including generic name(s), dose(s), and route(s) of administration.
Authors submitting review manuscripts should include a section describing the methods used for locating, selecting, extracting and synthesizing data. These methods should also be summarized in the abstract. Please use standard reporting tools available at EQUATOR network.
Reports of randomized clinical trials should present information on all major study elements, including the protocol, assignment of interventions (methods of randomization, concealment of allocation to treatment groups) and the method of masking (blinding) based on the CONSORT Statement (Moher D, Schulz KF, Altman DG: The CONSORT Statement: Revised Recommendations for Improving the Quality of Reports of Parallel-Group Randomized Trials. Ann Intern Med. 2001;134:657-662, also available at http://www.consort-statement.org).
Authors submitting review article should include a section describing the methods used for locating, selecting, extracting and synthesizing data. These methods should also be summarized in the abstract.
Present your results in logical sequence in the text, tables and illustrations, giving the main or most important findings first. Do not repeat in the text all the data in the tables or illustrations; emphasize or summarize only important observations. Extra or supplementary materials and technical detail can be placed in an appendix where it will be accessible but will not interrupt the flow of the text; alternatively, it can be published only in the electronic version of the journal.
When data are summarized in the Results section, give numeric results not only as derivatives (for example, percentages) but also as the absolute numbers from which the derivatives were calculated and specify the statistical methods used to analyze them. Restrict tables and figures to those needed to explain the argument of the paper and to assess its support. Use graphs as an alternative to tables with many entries; do not duplicate data in graphs and tables. Avoid non-technical use of technical terms in statistics, such as “random” (which implies a randomizing device), “normal”, “significant”, “correlations” and “sample.” Where scientifically appropriate, analyses of the data by variables such as age and sex should be included.
Include Summary of key findings (primary outcome measures, secondary outcome measures, results as they relate to a prior hypothesis); Strengths and limitations of the study (study question, study design, data collection, analysis); Interpretation and implications.
In the context of the totality of evidence (a systematic review to refer to, if not, could one be reasonably done here and now? what this study adds to the available evidence, effects on patient care and health policy, possible mechanisms); Controversies raised by this study; and Future research directions (for this particular research collaboration, underlying mechanisms, clinical research). Do not repeat in detail data or other material given in the Introduction or the Results section.
In particular, contributors should avoid making statements on economic benefits and costs unless their manuscript includes economic data and analyses. Avoid claiming priority and alluding to work that has not been completed. State new hypotheses when warranted but clearly label them as such.
Citation in the text
Reference citations in the text should be identified by numbers in square brackets before the punctuation marks. Some examples:
1. Negotiation research spans many disciplines .
2. This result was later contradicted by Becker and Seligman .
3. This effect has been widely studied [1-3,7].
The list of references should only include works that are cited in the text and that have been published or accepted for publication. Personal communications and unpublished works should only be mentioned in the text. Do not use footnotes or endnotes as a substitute for a reference list. Please use Vancouver style of references with only year in the date field and use et al after first 6 authors if there are 7 or more authors.
The entries in the list should be numbered consecutively.
Smith JJ. The world of science. American Journal of Science. 1999;36:234–5. (Issue numbers may be skipped if the journal uses continuous pagination in a volume.)
Slifka MK, Whitton JL. Clinical implications of dysregulated cytokine production. Am J Sci. 1999;36:234–5. https://doi:10.1007/s001090000086. Please always use doi where available.
Blenkinsopp A, Paxton P. Symptoms in the pharmacy: a guide to the management of common illness. 3rd ed. Oxford: Blackwell Science; 1998.
Wyllie AH, Kerr JFR, Currie AR. Cell death: the significance of apoptosis. In: Bourne GH, Danielli JF, Jeon KW, editors. International review of cytology. London: Academic; 1980. pp. 251–306.
Doe J. Title of subordinate document. In: The dictionary of substances and their effects. Royal Society of Chemistry. 1999. http://www.rsc.org/dose/title of subordinate document. Accessed 15 Jan 1999.
Always use the standard abbreviation of a journal’s name
For authors using EndNote, Discover Publishing Group provides an output style that supports the formatting of in-text citations and reference list. EndNote style (zip, 3 kB)
- All tables are to be numbered using Arabic numerals.
- Tables should always be cited in text in consecutive numerical order.
- For each table, please provide a table caption (title) explaining the components of the table.
- Identify any previously published material by giving the original source in the form of a reference at the end of the table caption.
- Footnotes to tables should be indicated by superscript lower-case letters (or asterisks for significance values and other statistical data) and included beneath the table body.
8. Artwork and Illustrations Guidelines
(Figures created in MS Excel can be sent in Excel /MS Word/ PowerPoint with imbedded data for easy reproduction by production department. Or follow the instructions given below)
Electronic Figure Submission
- Provide all figures electronically.
- Indicate what graphics program was used to create the artwork.
- For vector graphics, the preferred format is EPS; for halftones, please use TIFF format. MS Office files are also acceptable.
- Vector graphics containing fonts must have the fonts embedded in the files.
- Name your figure files with "Fig" and the figure number, e.g., Fig1.eps.
- To add lettering, it is best to use Helvetica or Arial (sans serif fonts).
- Keep lettering consistently sized throughout your final-sized artwork, usually about 2–3 mm (10–12 pt).
- Variance of type size within an illustration should be minimal, e.g., do not use 8-pt type on an axis and 20-pt type for the axis label.
- Avoid effects such as shading, outline letters, etc.
- Do not include titles or captions within your illustrations.
- All figures are to be numbered using Arabic numerals.
- Figures should always be cited in text in consecutive numerical order.
- Figure parts should be denoted by lowercase letters (a, b, c, etc.).
- If an appendix appears in your article and it contains one or more figures, continue the consecutive numbering of the main text. Do not number the appendix figures, "A1, A2, A3, etc." Figures in online appendices (Electronic Supplementary Material) should, however, be numbered separately.
- Each figure should have a concise caption describing accurately what the figure depicts. Include the captions in the text file of the manuscript, not in the figure file.
- Figure captions begin with the term Fig. in bold type, followed by the figure number, also in bold type.
- No punctuation is to be included after the number, nor is any punctuation to be placed at the end of the caption.
- Identify all elements found in the figure in the figure caption; and use boxes, circles etc., as coordinate points in graphs.
- Identify previously published material by giving the original source in the form of a reference citation at the end of the figure caption.
Figure Placement and Size
- Figures should be submitted separately from the text, if possible.
- When preparing your figures, size figures to fit in the column width.
If you include figures that have already been published elsewhere, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner(s) for both the print and online format. Please be aware that some publishers do not grant electronic rights for free and that Discover Publishing Group will not be able to refund any costs that may have occurred to receive these permissions. In such cases, material from other sources should be used.
9. File formatting
- Provide all supplementary material in standard file formats.
- Please include in each file the following information: article title, journal name, author names; affiliation and e-mail address of the corresponding author.
- To accommodate user downloads, please keep in mind that larger-sized files may require very long download times and that some users may experience other problems during downloading.
- Spreadsheets should be submitted as .csv or .xlsx files (MS Excel).
- If supplying any supplementary material, the text must make specific mention of the material as a citation, similar to that of figures and tables.
- Name the files consecutively, e.g. “ESM_3.mpg”, “ESM_4.pdf”.
- For each supplementary material, please supply a concise caption describing the content of the file.
10. Ethical Responsibilities of Authors
Discover Publishing Group is committed to upholding the integrity of the scientific record. As a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) the journal will follow the COPE guidelines on how to deal with potential acts of misconduct.
Authors should refrain from misrepresenting research results which could damage the trust in the journal, the professionalism of scientific authorship and ultimately the entire scientific endeavor. Maintaining integrity of the research and its presentation can be achieved by following the rules of good scientific practice, which include:
- The manuscript has not been submitted to more than one journal for simultaneous consideration.
- The manuscript has not been published previously (partly or in full), unless the new work concerns an expansion of previous work (please provide transparency on the re-use of material to avoid the hint of text-recycling [self-plagiarism]).
- A single study is not split up into several parts to increase the quantity of submissions and submitted to various journals or to one journal over time (e.g. salami-publishing).
- No data have been fabricated or manipulated (including images) to support your conclusions
- No data, text, or theories by others are presented as if they were the author’s own (plagiarism). Proper acknowledgements to other works must be given (this includes material that is closely copied (near verbatim), summarized and/or paraphrased), quotation marks are used for verbatim copying of material, and permissions are secured for material that is copyrighted.
- Consent to submit has been received explicitly from all co-authors, as well as from the responsible authorities - tacitly or explicitly - at the institute/organization where the work has been carried out, before the work is submitted.
- Authors whose names appear on the submission have contributed sufficiently to the scientific work and therefore share collective responsibility and accountability for the results.
- Authors are strongly advised to ensure the correct author group, corresponding author, and order of authors at submission. Changes of authorship or in the order of authors are not accepted after acceptance of a manuscript.
- Adding and/or deleting authors at revision stage may be justifiably warranted. A letter must accompany the revised manuscript to explain the role of the added and/or deleted author(s). Further documentation may be required to support your request.
- Requests for addition or removal of authors as a result of authorship disputes after acceptance are honored after formal notification by the institute or independent body and/or when there is agreement between all authors.
- Upon request authors should be prepared to send relevant documentation or data in order to verify the validity of the results. This could be in the form of raw data, samples, records, etc. Sensitive information in the form of confidential proprietary data is excluded.
If there is a suspicion of misconduct, the journal will carry out an investigation following the COPE guidelines. If, after investigation, the allegation seems to raise valid concerns, the accused author will be contacted and given an opportunity to address the issue. If misconduct has been established beyond reasonable doubt, this may result in the Editor-in-Chief’s implementation of the following measures, including, but not limited to:
- If the article is still under consideration, it may be rejected and returned to the author.
- If the article has already been published online, depending on the nature and severity of the infraction, either an erratum will be placed with the article or in severe cases complete retraction of the article will occur. The reason must be given in the published erratum or retraction note. Please note that retraction means that the paper is maintained on the platform, watermarked "retracted" and explanation for the retraction is provided in a note linked to the watermarked article.
- The author’s institution will be informed.
11. Compliance with Ethical Standards
To ensure objectivity and transparency in research and to ensure that accepted principles of ethical and professional conduct have been followed, authors should include information regarding sources of funding, potential conflicts of interest (financial or non-financial), informed consent if the research involved human participants, and a statement on welfare of animals, if the research involved animals.
Authors should include the following statements (if applicable) in a separate section entitled “Compliance with Ethical Standards” when submitting a paper:
- Disclosure of potential conflicts of interest
- Research involving Human Participants and/or Animals
- Informed consent
Please note that standards could vary slightly per journal depending on their peer review policies (i.e. single or double blind peer review) as well as per journal subject discipline. Before submitting your article check the instructions following this section carefully.
The corresponding author should be prepared to collect documentation of compliance with ethical standards and send if requested during peer review or after publication.
The Editors reserve the right to reject manuscripts that do not comply with the above-mentioned guidelines. The author will be held responsible for false statements or failure to fulfill the above-mentioned guidelines.
Disclosure of potential conflicts of interest
Authors must disclose all relationships or interests that could influence or bias the work. Although an author may not feel there are conflicts, disclosure of relationships and interests affords a more transparent process, leading to an accurate and objective assessment of the work. Awareness of real or perceived conflicts of interests is a perspective to which the readers are entitled and is not meant to imply that a financial relationship with an organization that sponsored the research or compensation for consultancy work is inappropriate. Examples of potential conflicts of interests that are directly or indirectly related to the research may include but are not limited to the following:
- Research grants from funding agencies (please give the research funder and the grant number)
- Honoraria for speaking at symposia
- Financial support for attending symposia
- Financial support for educational programs
- Employment or consultation
- Support from a project sponsor
- Position on advisory board or board of directors or other type of management relationships
- Multiple affiliations
- Financial relationships, for example equity ownership or investment interest
- Intellectual property rights (e.g. patents, copyrights and royalties from such rights)
- Holdings of spouse and/or children that may have financial interest in the work
In addition, interests that go beyond financial interests and compensation (non-financial interests) that may be important to readers should be disclosed. These may include but are not limited to personal relationships or competing interests directly or indirectly tied to this research, or professional interests or personal beliefs that may influence your research.
The corresponding author collects the conflict of interest disclosure forms from all authors.
Examples of disclosures:
Funding: This study was funded by X (grant number X).
Conflict of Interest: Author A has received research grants from Company A. Author B has received a speaker honorarium from Company X and owns stock in Company Y. Author C is a member of committee Z.
If no conflict exists, the authors should state:
Conflict of Interest: Author A, Author B, and Author C declare that they have no conflict of interest.
12. Research involving human participants and/or animals
1) Statement of human rights
When reporting studies that involve human participants, authors should include a statement that the studies have been approved by the appropriate institutional and/or national research ethics committee and have been performed in accordance with the ethical standards as laid down in the 1964 Declaration of Helsinki and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. For further details see, Protection of Research Participants Policy
If doubt exists whether the research was conducted in accordance with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration or comparable standards, the authors must explain the reasons for their approach, and demonstrate that the independent ethics committee or institutional review board explicitly approved the doubtful aspects of the study.
The following statements should be included in the text before the References section:
Ethical approval: “All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.”
For retrospective studies, please add the following sentence:
“For this type of study formal consent is not required.”
2) Statement on the welfare of animals
The welfare of animals used for research must be respected. When reporting experiments on animals, authors should indicate whether the international, national, and/or institutional guidelines for the care and use of animals have been followed and that the studies have been approved by a research ethics committee at the institution or practice at which the studies were conducted (where such a committee exists).
For studies with animals, the following statement should be included in in the text before the References section:
Ethical approval: “All applicable international, national, and/or institutional guidelines for the care and use of animals were followed.”
If applicable (where such a committee exists): “All procedures performed in studies involving animals were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institution or practice at which the studies were conducted.”
If articles do not contain studies with human participants or animals by any of the authors, please select one of the following statements:
“This article does not contain any studies with human participants performed by any of the authors.”
“This article does not contain any studies with animals performed by any of the authors.”
“This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.”
All persons have individual rights that are not to be infringed. Individual participants in studies have, for example, the right to decide what happens to the (identifiable) personal data gathered, to what they have said during a study or an interview, as well as to any photograph that was taken. Hence it is important that all participants gave their informed consent in writing prior to inclusion in the study. Identifying details (names, dates of birth, identity numbers and other information) of the participants that were studied should not be published in written descriptions, photographs, and genetic profiles unless the information is essential for scientific purposes and the participant (or parent or guardian if the participant is incapable) gave written informed consent for publication. Complete anonymity is difficult to achieve in some cases and informed consent should be obtained if there is any doubt. For example, masking the eye region in photographs of participants is inadequate protection of anonymity. If identifying characteristics are altered to protect anonymity, such as in genetic profiles, authors should provide assurance that alterations do not distort scientific meaning.
The following statement should be included:
Informed consent: “Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.”
If identifying information about participants is available in the article, the following statement should be included:
“Additional informed consent was obtained from all individual participants for whom identifying information is included in this article.”
13. Post acceptance
Authors will be asked to transfer copyright of the article to the Society or the journal (publisher). This will ensure the widest possible protection and dissemination of information under copyright laws. It’s not required if you are publishing in an open access model.
Offprints can be ordered by the corresponding author.
The purpose of the proof is to check for typesetting or conversion errors and the completeness and accuracy of the text, tables and figures. Substantial changes in content, e.g., new results, corrected values, title and authorship are not allowed without the approval of the Editor. After online publication, further changes can only be made in the form of an Erratum, which will be hyperlinked to the article.
The article will be published online after receipt of the corrected proofs. This is the official first publication citable with the DOI. After release of the printed version, the paper can also be cited by issue and page numbers.
English Language Editing
For editors and reviewers to accurately assess the work presented in your manuscript you need to ensure the English language is of sufficient quality to be understood. If you need help with writing in English, you should consider:
- Asking a colleague who is a native English speaker to review your manuscript for clarity.
- Visiting the English language tutorial which covers the common mistakes when writing in English.
- Using a professional language editing service where editors will improve the English to ensure that your meaning is clear and identify problems that require your review.
Please note that the use of a language editing service is not a requirement for publication in this journal and does not imply or guarantee that the article will be selected for peer review or accepted. If your manuscript is accepted it will be checked by our copyeditors for spelling and formal style before publication.