Hospital Pediatrics Reviewer Instructions
Thank you for agreeing to review for Hospital Pediatrics. Our target audience includes both academic and community pediatric hospitalists and our mission is to publish original research and commentary directly related to the practice of pediatric hospital medicine. The current issue may be viewed at www.hospitalpediatrics.org in order to familiarize yourself with the type of work we publish and specific author instructions, including word limits, for each type of submission accepted.
This Hospital Pediatrics article was written to help produce high-quality reviews: Research Methods: How to Perform an Effective Review
Please include the following elements in your review.
Remarks to the editor
Please express your opinion on the quality of the paper in general here. If there are serious methodologic flaws, then this is the place to say so. Also, please address the issue of the level of interest that you believe this paper will generate amongst our target audience if possible.
Remarks to the author
Please address remediable elements here and keep comments polite and constructive. Even if you recommend rejection of the paper in your confidential remarks to the editor, any specific suggestions you can provide may be helpful to the authors in eventually publishing their work.
Please consider that each paper is the original work of the authors and editing for personal preferences of the reviewer should be avoided. However, please feel free to comment on lack of clarity in the author’s phrasing. Please be as specific as possible about the section, page or paragraph in the paper you are referring to in your remarks.
Dos and Don’ts
- Be familiar with the journal's author instructions.
- Respect intellectual property rights
- Maintain confidentiality about the contents of the manuscript.
- Be aware that your role is advisory and the decision to publish an article is based on many factors, which include the quality of the article as well as overall interest to the readership.
- Provide your review in a timely manner and with clarity and balance.
- Be collegial and constructive. Provide comments that will help to improve the quality of the manuscript.
- Provide an overview and then address all sections of the manuscript.
- Support your opinions with objective evidence of what is or is not in the manuscript (versus "I hate/love this paper").
- In the section labelled “comments to the editors,” inform us as to whether you feel comfortable providing an evaluation of the statistical methods. You have been selected to review the manuscript because of your expertise in the content area of the manuscript and we value your opinion.
- If you cannot critically appraise the statistical methods, it is still helpful to us if you provide a review of the other sections of the manuscript.
- DO NOT review if you have a conflict of interest. There are many types of conflict of interest, including intellectual (eg, having a strong belief that makes it difficult for you to evaluate the reported findings), financial (eg, gaining a financial benefit if the work is either published or not published), or personal (eg, having a personal or professional relationship with one or more of the authors that makes it difficult to fairly evaluate the work). Reviewers are selected because they are experts in the field. Therefore, it is common for there to be questions about potential conflict of interest. If you are unsure about whether you should recuse yourself, please contact the editors to evaluate the situation.
- DO NOT contact an author without the editor's permission.
- DO NOT break the embargo of an article prior to its publication.
Conducting the Review
Originality and relevance
The study should add something new to the literature. It should deal with an important topic and be of interest to clinicians and scientists.
The article should be well written and well organized. It should include all relevant sections for the manuscript type (eg, abstract, introduction, method, results, discussion).
The methods should be clear and concise, and the statistics should be appropriate for the study design. The sample size should be adequate to address the study question. Please indicate in your review whether you feel that additional statistical review is warranted.
All citations and references should be relevant to the article.
Clinical trials should be registered with ClinicalTrials.gov or other primary registry.
The journal provides guidance to authors about the publication of trials, systematic reviews and meta-analyses, case studies, ethics rounds, and quality improvement reports. Please review the author guidelines to be aware of the journal requirements for these types of manuscripts.
Writing the Review
Be specific in your comments and provide examples from the manuscript, including line numbers or areas of the manuscript to which you are referring. Begin by providing general comments on the manuscript. Next, provide specific comments on the individual sections of the manuscript.
Be direct in your confidential comments to the editor.
Do not comment on the acceptability of a manuscript for publication in your comments to the author (eg, do not indicate that a manuscript should be accepted once suggested revisions are made). These comments will be removed from your review.
Convey the same overall message in your comments to the editor and author (while the confidential message to the editor may be more direct, the overall message to both the editor and author should be the same).
The manuscript is a privileged document and subject to an embargo. Do not discuss the manuscript with others (eg, colleagues, the author, the media) during or after the review process. Your role as a reviewer is also kept confidential from authors and other reviewers. Please note: Reviews submitted to Hospital Pediatrics are the property of the journal. To maintain confidentiality, reviewers may not share or republish reviews elsewhere without the permission of the journal.
Communicate any suspicions of a breach of ethics to the editorial office. Do not contact the author directly. Two common areas of ethical concern include the following:
Plagiarism is the use of previously published content (text, figures, tables, concepts, data) without permission or attribution. Previously published content must be attributed to the source with a complete, correct reference.
Conflicts of interest
If you are aware of any author conflicts of interest (eg, commercial affiliations, consultancies) that are not already listed on the manuscript’s title page, contact the editorial office.
For additional guidance on peer reviewer ethics, see the COPE Ethical Guidelines for Peer Reviewers.