The Publication Process
The final outcome of research is a publication that is to be read by clinicians that have to decide if they will change their clinical practice as a result of the published study.
Not all published literature is of high quality and the conclusions can not necessarily be accepted at face value.
The review process prior to publication:
• submitted manuscripts are initially examined by the journal editor to briefly review if it fits into the journal’s scope and if it is of sufficient quality for further review; the editor will select some ‘experts’ to review the manuscript
Problems with the peer review process:
While the purpose of the peer review process is for those with expertise in the area concerned to evaluate the manuscript to determine validity and importance of the manuscript, a number of manuscripts can still tend to get through with flaws.
Reasons for failure of peer review include :
• reviewer bias or professional rivalry
• lack of expertise by reviewers
• bias against the null hypothesis
• lack of time or motivation by reviewer