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PM&DC Journals Committee determined to ensure Standards, Transparency

Journals which failed to provide peer review reports not recommended
for recognition Cases of a few Journals deferred till rectification of
deficiencies while some recommended for recognition

ISLAMABAD: Journals Evaluation Committee of Pakistan Medical & Dental Council is determined to ensure standards of the journals and transparency in its working. The prime objective is to facilitate journals improve their standards. With this objective in mind, the meeting held on January 31st 2024 at PM&DC offices in Islamabad which was chaired by Prof. Shoaib Shafi the Chairman of the committee disposed of cases of many journals who had applied for recognition.

Prof. Shoaib Shafi Chairman of PMDC Journals Evaluation Committee charring the
meeting held at PMDC offices on January 31st 2024.

Evaluation Reports of thirty two journals were discussed in detail. Some journals who failed to provide peer review reports as requested after evaluation were not recommended for recognition. The cases of a few journals were deferred and they were given another chance to rectify the deficiencies conveyed to them earlier while the cases of some journals who had successfully fulfilled all the requirements were recommended for recognition.

It may be mentioned here that all new journals are evaluated by three members of the committee who are not from the same province while others are evaluated by two members. Regular publication, peer review by two experts before any manuscript is published, Ethics Committee approval, plagiarism check, publication ethics, timeline of publication and following ICMJE as well as COPE guidelines are some of the essential requirements which are looked at in detail during evaluation of the journals. Peer Review is central to maintaining standard of a journal which cannot be compromised at any cost. The journals after evaluation are provided detailed report, highlighting some of their deficiencies and they are also provided guidelines on how to proceed further.

Journals Evaluation Committee of PM&DC held its meeting at
Islamabad on January 31st 2024. Photograph taken on the occasion
shows the committee members photographed with the Chairperson
Prof. Shoaib Shafi after the meeting.

It is the earnest desire of PM&DC that we should have many standard biomedical journals so that the researches could get their research work published as soon as possible and they don’t have to wait for too long. PM&DC is also planning to organize some training workshops for the editors. The committee felt that we must have a medical journal published from Baluchistan for which every help and assistance will be provided to those interested in the medical college and medical university in that province.

Even after getting recognition, the editors of these journals should not take it lightly as they may be asked to provide peer review reports, plagiarism check, and ethics committee approval of any manuscript any time. They are supposed to keep this record for at least two years.

Members of the committee who are themselves Editors of some journals should always be prepared to provide all these documents related to their journals whenever asked. They are supposed to set an example of transparency in the functioning of the committee.

Categorization of manuscript is another important issue, hence KAP studies and Surveys should not be included as original article. The PM&DC will issue guidelines on which types of studies can be included as original article and given credit for original research.

Application for recognition of twelve more journals were received and they were referred to various committee members who were asked to provide their evaluation reports as soon as possible. During the meeting it was emphasized that efforts should be made to accelerate the publication of decisions on the PM&DC website so that editors whose cases are discussed and authors can easily find out the names of the recognized journals. Prof. Shoaib Shafi Chairperson of the committee thanked all the members for their valuable input and also thanked Madam Rukhsana head of the Journals Section for ensuring smooth functioning of the committee.


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