Editorial Policies

Journal of Shifa Tameer-e-Millat University

It is policy of the Journal of Shifa Tameer-e-Millat University (JTMU) to publish articles pertaining to different fields of medical sciences (Medicine, Dentistry, Pharmacy, Applied Health Sciences and Nursing, etc.) providing sufficient contribution to medical knowledge. The articles may include new experimental methods of medical importance; new results obtained experimentally; new interpretation of existing results or data pertaining to clinical problems; or epidemiological work giving substantial scientific information pertaining to medical sciences.

All such articles should aim for development of medical concepts rather than mere recording of facts. Incomplete studies will be discouraged.

Objectives
  1. To publish original, well documented, peer reviewed clinical, allied and basic health/medical sciences manuscripts.
  2. To inculcate the habit of medical writing.
  3. To enable medical professionals to remain informed in multiple areas of medical and health sciences, including developments in fields other than their own.
  4. To share the experience and knowledge for benefit of patients in particular and humanity in general.
  5. To document medical problems pertinent to community.
  6. To achieve the highest level of ethical medical journalism and to produce a publication that is timely, credible, and enjoyable to read.
Editorial Freedom

The Editor-in-Chief has full authority over the editorial content of the journal and the timing of publication of its content. The Editor-in-Chief is supported by the editorial board which consists of highly competent individuals who have expertise in research including associate editors and international advisors. The editorial team makes decisions on the authenticity and validity of the submitted manuscripts in light of the journal's aims and scope. The publisher is not involved in any step of the manuscript review and decision-making process.

Authorship Policy

Authorship is based on the following four criteria:

  1. Substantial contributions to concept and design of study, or acquisition of data or analysis and interpretation of data
  2. Drafting the article or revising it critically for important intellectual content.
  3. Final approval of the version to be published.
  4. 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.
 

It is important to note that:

Acquisition of funding, collection of data, typing the manuscript or general supervision of the research alone, does not justify authorship. JSTMU strongly discourages gift authorship.

Manuscript Processing
Peer Review Process / Policy

Peer review is the unbiased critical assessment of manuscripts submitted to JSTMU by experts who are not part of the editorial staff. Each article submitted to JSTMU for publication is reviewed by at least two specialists of the concerned specialty as a double-blinded process.

Conflict of Interest

Conflict of interest statement for Authors:

All manuscripts for articles, original research reports, editorials, comments, reviews, book reviews, and letters that are submitted to the journal must be accompanied by a conflict of interest disclosure statement or a declaration by the authors that they do not have any conflicts of interest to declare. All articles that are published in the journal must be accompanied by this conflict of interest disclosure statement or a statement that the authors have replied that they have no conflicts of interest to declare. To facilitate this policy, all authors must disclose ‘ALL their potential conflicts of interest’ to the editors of the journal at the time of submission. These include all financial and non-financial interests and relationships (see definitions provided a little later in the text), direct employment with a private sector entity (whether full or part-time), and service on private sector and non-profit Boards and advisory panels, whether paid or unpaid. Authors should also disclose any conflict of interest that may have influenced either the conduct or the presentation of the research to the editors, including but not limited to close relationships with those who might be helped or hurt by the publication, academic interests and rivalries, and any personal, religious or political convictions relevant to the topic at hand. In the article, the authors must include a draft statement that discloses all relevant conflicts of interest and affiliations. The relevance of financial conflicts of interest with private firms is defined as a relationship of any value with a firm that has a stake in the subject of the manuscript or its competitors. Relevance for patents is defined as any invention or pending invention connected in any way to the subject.

Financial Conflicts of Interest:

Any financial relationship from the past three years (dating from the month of submission) of any size, should be disclosed. These potential conflicts of interest include;

  1. Direct employment, either full-time or part-time
  2. Grants & research funding (but not grants to your institution or others within your institution, on which you have not worked). These include substantial grants from trade associations and non-profit (50% or more) or funded by private sector firms
  3. Consultancies
  4. Travel Grants, speaking fees, writing fees, and other Honoraria
  5. Paid expert testimony for one side in an adversarial proceeding (this does not include testimony as a factual witness in a civil or criminal case)
  6. Patents granted and pending applications, irrespective of whether they are generating royalties or not
  7. Investment trusts Membership of private sector, scientific or other advisory Boards, whether paid or unpaid

Non-Financial Conflicts of Interest:

Authors may have strong views about the article being submitted for publication. The authors must consider disclosing these views and the editors may choose to print any affiliations or expressions from these views that may be relevant. These may be personal, political or intellectual, and may include any expression of strongly held views relevant to the subject of submission. Such disclosures may be original or they may be references to opinions previously expressed in books or monographs, opposite editorials (op-eds) or public comments, or to some prior sworn testimony or lobbying of legislators or legislative bodies. Dis closable non-financial conflicts of interest will also include membership or affiliation to nongovernmental organizations that have an interest in the submission.

How do I make a Declaration?

The journal requires from the authors a statement of ‘Declaration of Conflicting Interests’ in the manuscript, following any acknowledgments and prior to the references, under the heading ‘Conflict of Interest Statement’. If no declaration is made, the following will be printed under this heading in your article: ‘None Declared’. Alternatively, authors may wish to state that ‘The author(s) declare(s) that there is no conflict of interest.

 

Biomedical Ethical Committee / Considerations / Approvals

The journal requires certificate from respective Institutional Review Board / Ethical Committee for the research encompassed in the submitted manuscript.

When reporting experiments on human subjects, authors should indicate whether the procedures followed were in accordance with the ethical standards of the responsible committee on human experimentation (institutional and national) and with the Helsinki Declaration of 1975, as revised in 2000. If doubt exists whether the research was conducted in accordance with the Helsinki Declaration, the authors must explain the rationale for their approach, and demonstrate that the institutional review body explicitly approved the doubtful aspects of the study. When reporting experiments on animals, authors should be asked to indicate whether the institutional and national guide for the care and use of laboratory animals was followed.

In case of any study involving clinical trial, taking of informed consent of patients is mandatory.

Whenever editorial committee of JSTMU feels necessary, the research paper may be referred to the ethical committee, Shifa Tameer-e-Millat University.

Errata and corrections in published articles

Authors and readers are encouraged to notify the Editor if they find errors in published content, author's names and affiliations or if they have reasons for concern over the legitimacy of a publication. In such cases the journal will publish an ERRATUM in consultation with Editor-in-Chief and authors of the article, and/or replace or retract the article.

Article Withdrawal:

Articles in Press (articles that have been accepted for publication) that include errors, or are determined to violate the publishing ethics guidelines such as multiple submission, fake claims of authorship, plagiarism, fraudulent use of data or the like, may be “Withdrawn” from the journal. Withdrawal means that the article files are removed and replaced with a PDF stating that the article has been withdrawn from the journal in accordance with JSTMU Editorial Policies.

Article Retraction:

Published articles (with volume/issue/page information) which may contain infringements of professional ethical codes, such as multiple submissions, bogus claims of authorship, plagiarism, fraudulent use of data or the like are retracted.

A retraction note titled “Retraction: [article title]” signed by the authors and/or the Editor-in-Chief is published in the paginated part of a subsequent issue of the journal and listed in the contents list.

In the electronic version, a link is made to the original article. The online article is preceded by a screen containing the retraction note. It is to this screen that the link resolves; the reader can then proceed to the article itself. The original article is retained unchanged with a watermark on the PDF indicating on each page that it is “retracted.”

Redundant (multiple) publication/ Re-publication:

Abstracts and posters of conferences, results presented at meetings (for example, to inform investigators or participants about findings), results databases (data without interpretation, discussion, context or conclusions in the form of tables and text to describe data/information where this is not easily presented in tabular form) are not considered prior publication.

Authors who wish to publish translations of the articles that have been published elsewhere should ensure that they have appropriate permission(s), indicate clearly that the material has been translated and re-published, and indicate clearly the original source of the material. The Editor may request copies of related publications if he/she is concerned about overlap and possible redundancy.

Availability of data and materials

Submission of a manuscript to Journal of Shifa Tameer-e-Millat University implies that materials described in the manuscript, including all relevant raw data, will be freely available to any scientist wishing to use them for non-commercial purposes, without breaching participant confidentiality. JSTMU strongly encourages that all datasets on which the conclusions of the paper rely should be available to readers, and where there is a community established norm for data sharing, JSTMU mandates data deposition.

We encourage authors to ensure that their datasets are either deposited in publicly available repositories (where available and appropriate) or presented in the main manuscript or additional supporting files, in machine-readable format (such as spreadsheets rather than PDFs) whenever possible.

Image manipulation

All digital images in manuscripts considered for publication will be scrutinized for any indication of manipulation that is inconsistent with the following guidelines. Manipulation that violates these guidelines may result in delays in manuscript processing or rejection, or retraction of a published article.

No specific feature within an image may be enhanced, obscured, moved, removed, or introduced.

The grouping of images from different parts of the same gel, or from different gels, fields, or exposures, must be made explicit by the arrangement of the figure (i.e. using dividing lines) and in the text of the figure legend.

Adjustments of brightness, contrast, or color balance are acceptable if they are applied to every pixel in the image and as long as they do not obscure, eliminate, or misrepresent any information present in the original, including the background. Non-linear adjustments (e.g. changes to gamma settings) must be disclosed in the figure legend.

Any questions raised during or after the peer review process will be referred to the Editor, who will request the original data from the author(s) for comparison with the prepared figures. If the original data cannot be produced, the manuscript may be rejected or, in the case of a published article, retracted. Any case in which the manipulation affects the interpretation of the data will result in rejection or retraction. Cases of suspected misconduct will be reported to the author'(s) institution(s).

Citations

Research articles and non-research articles (e.g. Opinion, Review, and Commentary articles) must cite appropriate and relevant literature in support of the claims made. Excessive and inappropriate self-citation or coordinated efforts among several authors to collectively self-cite is strongly discouraged.

Authors should consider the following guidelines when preparing their manuscript:

Any statement in the manuscript that relies on external sources of information (i.e., not the authors’ own new ideas or findings or general knowledge) should use a citation.

Authors should avoid citing derivations of original work. For example, they should cite the original work rather than a review article that cites an original work.

Authors should ensure that their citations are accurate (i.e. they should ensure the citation supports the statement made in their manuscript and should not misrepresent another work by citing it if it does not support the point the authors wish to make).

Authors should not cite sources that they have not read.

Authors should not preferentially cite their own or their friend's, peer's, or institution's publications.

Authors should avoid citing work solely from one country.

Authors should not use an excessive number of citations to support one point.

Ideally, authors should cite sources that have undergone peer review where possible.

Authors should not cite advertisements or advertorial material.

Confidentiality and Embargos

Editors will treat all manuscripts submitted to Journal of Shifa Tameer-e-Millat University in confidence. Our journal adheres to ICMJE Ethical Guidelines for peer reviewers. Reviewers are therefore required to respect the confidentiality of the peer review process and not reveal any details of a manuscript or its review, during or after the peer-review process, beyond the information released by the journal. If reviewers wish to involve a colleague in the review process they should first obtain permission from the journal. The Editor should be informed of the names of any individuals who assisted in the review process when the report is returned. JSTMU will not share manuscripts with third parties except in cases of suspected misconduct.

Misconduct

Journal of Shifa Tameer-e-Millat University takes seriously all allegations of potential misconduct. JSTMU will follow the ICMJE guidelines outlining how to deal with cases of suspected misconduct.

In cases of suspected research or publication misconduct, it may be necessary for the Editor to contact and share manuscripts with third parties, for example, author'(s) institution(s) and ethics committee(s). JSTMU may also seek advice from ICMJE and discuss anonymized cases in the ICMJE Forum. The editor may also involve ICMJE independent ombudsman.

Commercial organizations

Authors from pharmaceutical companies, or other commercial organizations that sponsor clinical trials, should declare these as competing interests on submission. They should also adhere to the Good Publication Practice guidelines for pharmaceutical companies (GPP3), which are designed to ensure that publications are produced in a responsible and ethical manner. The guidelines also apply to any companies or individuals that work on industry-sponsored publications, such as freelance writers, contract research organizations and communications companies.

Journal Ownership

The Journal of Shifa Tameer-e-Millat University, often referred to as 'JSTMU', is the property of Shifa Tameer-e-Millat University (STMU); a not-for profit, federally chartered, private sector University. It is maintained by the editorial board of the Journal under supervision of the statutory bodies of the University. 

Advertisement Policy

The editorial decisions of JSTMU are taken separately from, and not influenced by, advertising or any related revenue. The journal makes all possible efforts to refuse advertisements which are misleading.

Publication Timelines

Typically, the manuscript will be reviewed within 6-8 weeks after submission. If the reviewers' reports contradict one another or if a report is unduly delayed, a further expert opinion will be sought. If necessary, manuscripts will be returned to the authors for revision. The Editorial team may request more than one revision of a manuscript, and alternative reviewers may also be invited to review the manuscript at any time.

The Editorial team is responsible for the decision to reject or recommend the manuscript for publication. This decision will be sent to the author along with any recommendations made by the reviewers. After acceptance, it takes around 1-2 months to publish the article online, and a few weeks later this is compiled into an online volume and issue. The print copy follows within 3 months of acceptance of manuscript.

 

Initial decision to review

1-2 weeks after submission

Decision after review

6-8 weeks after submission

Anticipated timeframe for suggested revisions 

3-4 months (with flexibility if needed)

Time to online publication

1-2 months after acceptance

Time to print publication

Within 3 months of acceptance

Open Access Policy

JSTMU provides open access to its content on the principle that making research freely available to the public supports global exchange of knowledge.

License Terms [CC (BY) (NC) (ND)]

JSTMU follows "CC BY NC "creative commons" licensing. For more information, please visit:  http://creativecommons.org/

PG Thesis / Dissertation based articles

An article based on dissertation can be sent for publication provided that the data is not more than three years old. A copy of approval letters of synopsis and dissertation obtained from the review board must be submitted with the research paper. Dissertation based articles should be re-written in accordance with the journal's instructions to the author guidelines.

Article shall undergo routine editorial processing including external peer-review based upon which final decision shall be made for publication. Such articles, if approved, shall be published under the disclosure by author that 'it is a Dissertation based article'.

Reprints

On publication, the corresponding author will be sent the URL for online access to their article along with a hard copy to his postal address through courier.

Copyrights

JSTMU is the owner of all copyright to any work published in the journal. Any material printed in JSTMU may not be reproduced without the permission of the editors or publisher. The JSTMU accepts only original material for publication with the understanding that except for abstracts, no part of the data has been published or will be submitted for publication elsewhere before appearing in this journal. The Editorial Board makes every effort to ensure the accuracy and authenticity of material printed in the journal. However, conclusions and statements expressed are views of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Editorial Board or JSTMU.

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