This year, Pediatrics, the flagship journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), will reach a significant milestone: 75 years of publication, driven by the journal’s mission to provide timely, evidence-based information to improve the health and wellbeing of all children. Although this is a cause for celebration, this year is also a time to reflect on the journal’s history and where it will go in the future.
In 1948, the first issue of Pediatrics was launched under the editorial leadership of Dr Hugh McCulloch and sent to 2000 subscribers. Although the number of subscribers has grown over the years to 70 000, the number of readers who access the journal online reached >11 million in 2022. The number of articles submitted annually has also increased. For example, 25 years ago, 1400 manuscripts were received for peer review, and, currently, >5000 manuscripts are submitted to the journal annually. Pediatrics is also the most cited peer-reviewed journal of those published in our specialty, with >100 000 citations in 2021 to articles published in 2019 and 2020.1
The success of Pediatrics is not just in these metrics but also in the influence the journal has had in the delivery of child health care. To commemorate the 75th year since the inaugural issue was published, we will examine the journal’s contributions by looking back at articles considered game-changers by pediatricians. We are excited to share this list of articles and a description of their impact later this year. We also look forward to celebrating our 75 years of publication with an in-person celebration at the AAP National Conference and Exhibition in Washington, DC, this coming October.
Our salute to the journal’s first 75 years will also highlight ongoing and future work. This month, for example, we welcome a new section to our journal, “Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Justice.” Under the guidance of Associate Editor Kimberly Montez, MD, from Wake Forest University, articles in this section will explore the causes of health care disparities and what we can do to address inequities. Promoting equity, diversity, inclusion, and justice in Pediatrics is a goal not only for this section but for all articles in the journal. We will continue to publish original research and other article types throughout the journal on this important global priority.
Another recent addition to our journal Web site is a monthly blog written by and for families, “Family Connections with Pediatrics.” With guidance and oversight by Associate Editor Cara Coleman, JD, MPH, this new blog addresses how articles that appear in the journal can be used by patients and families. Additionally, editorial board members continue to blog about recently published articles, all of which can be found at https://publications.aap.org/journal- blogs. A new blog entry is posted every weekday, so the content is always new and relevant. All our content, including blogs, original articles, commentaries, and a gallery of video abstracts, which are brief videos summarizing recently published articles, are available through our redesigned journal Web site.
In the year ahead, the AAP will be launching a new journal, Pediatrics Open Science (www.pediatricsopenscience.org), a companion journal to Pediatrics for authors who are required to publish their work in open-access journals. The new journal will have an independent editorial board and will adhere to the same stringent editorial and publishing standards as Pediatrics. As the senior editors of Pediatrics, we welcome Drs John Patrick T. Co from Harvard as editor in chief and Michelle M. Kelly from the University of Wisconsin as deputy editor of Pediatrics Open Science. Our editorial board looks forward to working collaboratively with Drs Co and Kelly and their new editorial board in the years ahead as we have done with the editorial boards of other AAP journals. We look forward to sharing more information with authors and readers as Drs Co and Kelly prepare to launch this exciting new journal.
Over the years, your suggestions for improving the journal have been invaluable, and we look forward to your continuing constructive feedback so we can continue to make sure Pediatrics meets the needs of its readership. Please join us as we reflect on the past and plan for the future of Pediatrics through the special projects, interviews, videos, and other materials we will be posting on our 75th anniversary page (https://publications.aap.org/pediatrics/pages/pediatrics75) to mark this momentous occasion.
Happy 75th Anniversary, Pediatrics!
FUNDING: No external funding.
CONFLICT OF INTEREST DISCLOSURES: All authors receive payment from the American Academy of Pediatrics for roles in the production of Pediatrics.
American Academy of Pediatrics