Publish or perish

November 1, 2006

In ophthalmology, particular emphasis is placed on clinical research and publications in order to gain entrance to higher specialist training. However, the length of time from submission of an article to a committee for review through to its publication, has often acted as a deterrent to many people who just want their voice to be heard As a result, concerns were raised that the length of time and administration costs of completing this process may result in a decrease in publications by junior doctors.1,2

Moreover, scientific and clinical productivity in the form of research projects and clinical case report publications to journals is commonly considered an accurate measure on which to base career advancement. Hence, there was a great concern than the future generation of ophthalmologists would not be able to progress past a certain level because of the difficulties they may find in having their research published.

In 1997, UK multicentre research ethics committees were introduced in a bid to overcome difficulties with applications to multiple local committees. This was followed by the introduction, in 2004, of the new Central Office for Research Ethics Committees (COREC).

Have article submission patterns changed?

Case reports dominate