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Ann Emerg Med. 2003 Jan;41(1):82-9.

Journal policy on ethics in scientific publication.


Medical journals aspire to select, through peer review, the highest quality science, and their reputations depend on the trust of readers, authors, researchers, reviewers, and patients. Almost every aspect of this process involves important ethical principles and decisions, which are seldom explicitly stated and even less often shared with the readership. A comprehensive policy on publication ethics is summarized in this article. A few of the topics addressed are study design; research subject consent; definitions and responsibilities of authorship; declaration of paid writers; types of potential conflicts of interest; management of conflicts of interest on the part of authors, journal reviewers, and members of the editorial board; blinding and confidentiality of peer review; assessment of peer review quality; public identification of degree of peer review of various portions of the journal; criteria for manuscript decisions; management of author appeals; definitions of prior publication; plagiarism; criteria for advertising and relationship between advertising and editorial matter; allegations of misconduct and journal policies for responding to them; and the relationship of the journal to the sponsoring society. Our goal in publishing these policies is to make the guiding ethical principles of this journal accessible to all of our readers and contributors.

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