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J Am Acad Psychiatry Law. 2011;39(3):332-41.

Ethics in forensic psychiatry publishing.

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Department of Psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06519, USA.


Several organizations have developed guidelines to help authors and editors of medical journals negotiate ethics dilemmas in publishing, but very little is known about how these guidelines translate to the context of forensic psychiatry. In this article, we explore the important topic of ethics in forensic psychiatry publishing. First, we review the historical development of ethics principles in medical and psychiatric publishing. We then analyze eight ethics dilemmas that have arisen in the publication of The Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law (The Journal) from 2000 to 2009, including disputes about authorship, conflict of interest, redundant publication, bias in peer reviewers, confidentiality in case reports, and others. We identify ethics principles that were relevant to the dilemmas and discuss how they were resolved by the editors of The Journal. We conclude by using the principles identified in the practical resolution of ethics dilemmas to derive a conceptual foundation for ethics in forensic psychiatry publishing.

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