Publication ethics is the statement of ethics for Quest International Journal of Medical and Health Sciences (QIJMHS), published by Quest International University (QIU). This statement was adapted from the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) principles and covered the code of ethics for the Chief Editor, Editorial Board Members, Reviewers, and Authors. This statement also has been approved by the publisher (QIU).
Duties and responsibilities of authors:
- Authors will take the responsibility of ensuring only new and original work for submission to the journal.
- Must not reproduce work that has been previously published in other journals.
- Must avoid duplicate submission. Authors should not submit a manuscript, which is being reviewed or considered by the journal to other journals simultaneously.
- Authors are only allowed to publish their work in other journals after the manuscript is rejected formally or if the journal officially accepts their request to withdraw their work.
- The author should notify the Chief Editor or the publisher of any data inaccuracy in the published manuscript to correct or retract the article.
- Authors should make significant contributions and be held accountable for any shortcomings in their work.
- Please refer to Submission Guidelines for Authors
Duties and responsibilities of reviewers:
- Ensure the rigorous standards of the scientific process by part in the peer-review system.
- Must disclose any competing interest before agreeing to review a submission.
- Can refuse to review any submission due to a conflict of interest or inadequate knowledge.
- Review all submissions objectively, fairly, and professionally.
- Uphold the integrity of the journal by identifying invalid research and helping to maintain the quality of the journal.
- Suggest improvements and recommend to the editor whether to accept, reject or request changes to the article.
- Reveal any ethical misconduct and prevent ethical breaches by identifying plagiarism encountered while reviewing to the chief editor for further action.
- Should ensure the originality of a submission and be alert to any plagiarism and redundant publication.
- Must not discuss the content of the submission without permission.
- Adhere to the time allocated for the review process. Requests for extension to review the submission are at the discretion of the chief editor.
Duties and responsibilities of editorial board members:
The Editorial Board should assist in various aspects of running the journal. Their responsibilities may include (but are not limited to):
- Actively contribute to the development and promote the journal.
- Should help to increase the visibility of the journal.
- Continuously support, provide feedback and suggest improvements for the journal.
- Administering peer review or serving as a peer reviewer.
- Consolidating journal reputation, recognized for their excellence and help suggest methods towards the ever-increasing readership.
- Encouraged to recommend that their colleagues submit to the journal.
- Contribute to expanding scope by recommending experts in the relevant fields as editorial members and peer reviewers.
Duties of the chief editor:
- Create an editorial board and determine publishing guidelines, including the journal's scope with the Authorities.
- Review content and evaluate manuscripts fairly based on intellectual merit.
- Ensure confidentiality of manuscripts and not disclose any information regarding manuscripts to anyone other than the people involved in the publishing process.
- Should maintain confidentiality, i.e., not disclose any information about a submitted manuscript to anyone other than the corresponding author, reviewers, potential reviewers, other editorial advisers, and the publisher, as appropriate.
- Has the responsibility to decide when and which articles are to be published.
- Write editorials and encourage editorial Board members to write on the topics of interest.
- Actively seek the views of board members, reviewers, and authors on how to improve/increase the image and visibility of the journal.
- Disclosure and conflicts of interest are to be maintained strictly. Unpublished materials revealed in a submitted manuscript will not be used in the research of the editor/members of the editorial board without the author’s clear written consent.
- Give clear instructions to potential contributors on the submission process and the authors' expectations.
- Ensure appropriate reviewers are selected/ identified for the reviewing process.
Plagiarism and originality statement:
- The Journal follows the authorship guidelines of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors.
- The Journal follows the standard international definition and description of plagiarism.
- The Journal assigns equal responsibility for the manuscript's intellectual integrity to all authors whose names appear on the manuscript/article. When submitting a manuscript, the Journal requires all authors to sign a statement accepting this responsibility.
- This statement must indicate that no part of the manuscript has been plagiarized.
- According to authorship guidelines, any such material should be made accessible to the Editor and should only be used with references. This may otherwise form the basis of a redundant publication/duplicate publication/"salami-slicing," and appropriate action may be taken by the Editor, ranging from rejection of the manuscript to debarment of the authors(s) from further publication in the Journal.
- It is emphasized that the Journal considers self-plagiarism as equally unethical as plagiarism in any other form. If material is to be used from the author's previous work, standard referencing guidelines must be followed.
- All manuscripts submitted to the Journal will be checked for plagiarism. If a manuscript submitted for publication (or a manuscript accepted for publication or an article that has already been published in the Journal) is found to be based on plagiarized material, the Editor will be obliged to write to the author(s) seeking an explanation. The corresponding author will be required to respond with an explanation within 30 days of receiving the letter from the editor.
- Any such manuscript for review will be held up till the matter is resolved.
- After receiving the author's explanation, if considered necessary, the Editor may also send a letter of information to the Head of the Institution or any other relevant authority at the author(s) institution.
- If the author(s) provides an acceptable explanation, the Editor may recommend appropriate changes, after which the review process for the submitted manuscript may commence.
- In case of failure of the author(s) to either respond within the stipulated time or if they are unable to provide a suitable explanation, the Editor will convene a meeting of the Plagiarism Committee of the Board of Editors the Journal to consider further action.
- Further action will depend upon the nature of the offence and may include rejection of the manuscript from publication along with possible debarment of the author(s) from further publishing in the Journal. The period of debarment will depend upon the nature of the offence and may range from a period of a few months to permanent.
- Information regarding this action may be published in the forthcoming issue of the Journal on a numbered page. Plagiarism, if detected and proven, would be considered a punishable offence. Immediate and unbiased action will be taken.
- The author must ensure that the article's plagiarism (similarity index) is below 10%. Plagiarism implies the use of another author's work without permission or acknowledgement. Plagiarism may have different forms, from copying word by word to rewriting. While defining plagiarism are taken into account:
- Literal copying: Copying the work word by word, in general, or in parts, without permission or acknowledging the source. Literal copying is plagiarism and is easily detected by plagiarism software.
- Substantial copying: Replicating a substantial part of the work without permission and confirmation of the source. In determining what is "substantial", both the quantity and the quality of the copied content are relevant. The relative value of copied text measures quality compared to the whole text. Where the essence of the work was copied, even not a very big part of it, plagiarism is identified.
- Paraphrasing: Copying may be made without literal replicating, used in the original work. This type of copying is known as paraphrasing, and it may be the most difficult type of plagiarism to reveal. Plagiarism in all its forms is unacceptable and will lead to immediate rejection of the paper.
Authors should state their results clearly, honestly, and without fabrication, falsification, or inappropriate data manipulation. The methods used in work should be clearly and unambiguously described so that the findings can be repeated and confirmed by other researchers.
Conflicts of interest:
A statement on conflict of interest must be included in the manuscript that they have herein disclosed any and all financial or other relationships which could be construed as a conflict of interest and that all sources of financial support for this study have been disclosed and are indicated in the acknowledgement.
When authors complete the declaration, they should consider the following questions:
- In the past five years, have you received reimbursements, fees, funding, or salary from an organization that may in any way gain or lose financially from the publication of this manuscript, either now or in the future? Is such an organization financing this manuscript (including the article-processing charge)? If so, please specify.
- Do you hold any stocks or shares in an organization that may in any way gain or lose financially from the publication of this manuscript? If so, please specify.
- Do you hold or are you currently applying for patents relating to the manuscript's content?
- Have you received reimbursements, fees, funding, or salary from an organization that holds or has applied for patents relating to the manuscript's content? If so, please specify.
- Do you have any other financial competing interests? If so, please specify.
Non-financial competing interests
Are there any non-financial competing interests (political, personal, religious, ideological, academic, intellectual, commercial, or any other) to declare about this manuscript? If so, please specify. If you are unsure whether you or one of your co-authors has a competing interest, please discuss it with the editorial office.
The covering letter should also contain a statement that the manuscript has been seen and approved by all authors and should give any additional information which may be helpful to the Editor. If there has been any prior publication of any part of the work, this should be acknowledged and appropriate written permission included.
Authorship and collaboration:
The name of authors listed in a paper should be limited to those who have made a significant contribution to the report. All manuscripts should be accompanied by a covering letter from the author responsible for correspondence regarding the manuscript. The undersigned co-authors of the article should contribute significantly to the manuscript and share in the responsibility for the above. The undersigned should stipulate that the material submitted to QIJMHS is new, original and has not been submitted to another publication for concurrent consideration. All co-authors must approve the final version of the paper and agree to the version of the paper before submission.
Authors also attest that any human and animal studies were undertaken as part of the research from which the manuscript was derived comply with the regulation of our institution(s) and with generally accepted guidelines governing such work. Authors should further attest that they have herein disclosed any and all financial or other relationships which could be construed as a conflict of interest and that all sources of financial support for the study have been disclosed and are indicated in the acknowledgement. All the major co-authors must sign this statement.
The ICMJE recommends that authorship be based on the following four criteria:
Available online: http://www.icmje.org/recommendations/browse/roles-and-responsibilities/defining-the-role-of-authors-and-contributors.html, accessed on 1.2.22
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.
Contributors who meet fewer than all 4 of the above criteria for authorship should not be listed as authors, but they should be acknowledged. Examples of activities that alone (without other contributions) do not qualify a contributor for authorship are the acquisition of funding; general supervision of a research group or general administrative support; and writing assistance, technical editing, language editing, and proofreading. Those whose contributions do not justify authorship may be acknowledged individually or together as a group under a single heading (e.g. “Clinical Investigators” or “Participating Investigators”), and their contributions should be specified (e.g., “served as scientific advisors,” “critically reviewed the study proposal,” “collected data,” “provided and cared for study patients”, “participated in writing or technical editing of the manuscript”).
Because acknowledgement may imply endorsement of acknowledged individuals of a study’s data and conclusions, editors are advised to require that the corresponding author obtain written permission to be acknowledged from all acknowledged individuals.
Multiple or redundant:
Authors should not publish manuscripts describing essentially the same research output in more than one journal or primary publication. A similar manuscript should not be submitted to more than one journal concurrently as this constitutes unethical publishing behaviour and it is unacceptable.
The average time from submission to initial assessment is two to three weeks and peer review 2-3 months based on the type of articles and availability of peer reviewers. It is always a best practice because it is beneficial for authors for quick decisions that allow them to submit their valuable research work elsewhere without delay. The publication of the journal is biannual (June and December). However, the publication process depends on several factors, such as the review process, authors' response, and the correction process.
Copyright disclosure statement / content licensing/ permission:
The articles in the QIJMHS are Open Access articles; published & licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License. Creative Commons CC BY-NC License The licensor permits others to copy, distribute, display, and perform the work, as well as make and distribute derivative works based on it. The licensor permits others to create and distribute derivative works, but only under the same or a compatible license.
Authors are free to:
Share — copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format
Adapt — remix, transform, and build upon the material
The licensor cannot revoke these freedoms as long as you follow the license terms.
Under the following terms:
Attribution — the author must give appropriate credit, provide a link to the license, and indicate if changes were made. The author may do so in any reasonable manner, but not in any way that suggests the licensor endorses you or your use.
Noncommercial — you may not use the material for commercial purposes.