Authorship criteria and reporting of ethical compliance in Indian biomedical journals

Pravin Bolshete

Abstract

The “instructions to authors” of a total of 55 PubMed/MEDLINE indexed Indian biomedical journals were evaluated to assess the authorship criteria and guidance on reporting of research ethics including incorporation of recent updates. Thirty-seven (67.3%) journals recommended the ICMJE guidelines for manuscript preparation. Thirty-two of 55 (58.2%) journals defined authorship; only two journals defined authorship as per the latest (2013) ICMJE criteria. The journals’ recommendations which indicated ethical compliance in articles were – the conduct of a study in accordance with the Declaration of Helsinki(n=39); ethical approval (n=37); consent (n=26); assent (n=10); and consent for identifiable information (n=31). The majority of the journals (n=27) referred to the 1975 version of the Declaration of Helsinki and the revisions of 2000 (n=25). None of them mentioned the latest (2013) Declaration of Helsinki amendment. Overall, the results showed that the international recommendations and latest updates have not been completely incorporated into the “instructions to authors” of Indian biomedical journals.

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