Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine

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Editorial, Legal, and Ethical Policies

Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (JOEM) adheres to the ethical policies put forth by the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) and the International Committee on Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE). For additional editorial, legal, and ethical policies, please visit the Information for Authors.


Each author must qualify for authorship per the criteria of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE). According to the ICMJE, an author is defined as one who has made substantive intellectual contribution to the development of a manuscript. The ICMJE guidelines state that authorship credit should be based on 1) substantial contributions to conception and design, acquisition of data, or analysis and interpretation of data; 2) drafting the article or revising it critically for important intellectual content; 3) final approval of the version to be published; 4) agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved. Authors should meet conditions 1, 2, 3, and 4. Authors of JOEM articles must meet all four criteria of authorship.

Post-Submission Changes in Authorship

After the initial submission of a manuscript, any changes whatsoever in authorship (adding author(s), deleting author(s), or re-arranging the order of authors) must be explained by a letter to the Editor from the authors concerned. This letter must be signed by all authors on the paper.

Conflict of Interest

Authors must state all possible conflicts of interest on the title page, including financial, consultant, institutional and other relationships that might lead to bias or a conflict of interest. If there is no conflict of interest, this should also be explicitly stated as "none declared." All relevant conflicts of interest should be included on the title page of the manuscript with the heading "Conflicts of Interest." They should also be reported on the author questionnaire during the online submission process, which includes a section on the disclosure of potential conflicts of interest based on the recommendations of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors, "Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals" (

Sources of Funding

All relevant sources of funding should be included on the title page of the manuscript. If the result reported in the submission corresponds directly to the specific aims of a source (or sources) of funding, then that source of funding should be described as follows: "The results reported herein correspond to specific aims of grant XXX to investigator YYY from ZZZ", where XXX is a grant number, YYY is the Principal Investigator of the grant, and ZZZ is the funding agency. All other sources of support should be described as follows: "This work was (also) supported by grant(s) XXX from ZZZ", where "also" is inserted only if the listed support is in addition to support corresponding directly to a specific aim, XXX is a grant number, and ZZZ is a funding agency. Additional sources of support should be added serially (e.g., grants XXX1 from ZZZ1, XXX2 from ZZZ2, and XXX3 from ZZZ3). In all cases, grant numbers should be provided in a format that allows interested parties to find the grant in publicly available databases provided by many funding agencies.  Specifically, authors are also requested to state explicitly whether they are receiving funding to support open access publishing.

Ethical Approval of Studies/Informed Consent

Authors of manuscripts that describe experimental studies on either humans or animals must supply to the Editor-in-Chief a statement that the study was approved by an institutional review committee or ethics committee and that the subjects gave informed consent. Such approval should be included on the title page as well as described in the Methods section of the manuscript. Additionally, for studies conducted with human subjects, the method by which informed consent was obtained from the participants (i.e., verbal or written) also needs to be stated in the Methods section.

Specifically, Requirements are:

          1. Patient consent, the type of consent, consent exempt statements to be mentioned consistently in all articles.
          2. Institutional Review Board approval number/ID to be mentioned consistently in all articles.

            In those situations where a formal institutional review board process is not available, the authors must indicate that the principles outlined in the Declaration of Helsinki have been followed. More information regarding the Declaration of Helsinki can be found at:

Duplicate Publication, Plagiarism and Fabrication

Manuscripts containing original material are accepted for consideration if neither the article nor any part of its essential substance, tables, or figures has been or will be published or submitted elsewhere before appearing in JOEM (in part or in full, in other words or in the same words, in English or in another language), and will not be submitted elsewhere unless rejected by the Journal or withdrawn by the author. (This restriction is exclusive of abstracts of the Work submitted for presentation to learned societies and scholarly forums. For manuscripts that have been posted in a recognized preprint archive, please review our Preprint Policy section available at  

Simultaneous submissions of the same manuscript to multiple journals are prohibited. If an author violates this requirement or engages in similar misconduct, the JOEM Editorial Board may reject the manuscript or impose a moratorium on acceptance of new manuscripts from the author. If it deems the misconduct sufficiently serious, the Editorial Board can refer the matter for investigation to the author's academic institution or hospital or to the appropriate state or local disciplinary body. A letter of permission is required for inclusion of any and all material that has been published previously or is "in press" by another journal. It is the responsibility of the author to request permission from the publisher for any material that is being reproduced. This requirement applies to text, illustrations, and tables. These permissions must be supplied to JOEM upon submission of the article, along with ample acknowledgement of the original source of the materials in the legend and/or text. Any fee associated with permission to reuse previously published material is the responsibility of the author of the manuscript.

If an author submits an article to JOEM that contains material to which they hold the copyright (figures, material from articles published on open-access or e-journals, and so on), they need to clearly indicate that they hold the copyright and provide JOEM with written permission to use the previously copyrighted material. All permission statements allowing JOEM to publish previously published material must extend to all print and digital media (so that material can be both printed and placed on the Journal's website) and must not include any time limitations.

JOEM maintains and upholds the concept of intellectual property rights and recognizes that plagiarism is a misuse of creative expression from others in the forms of ideas, words, photographs, and graphical renditions. Stated simply, plagiarism is when one person uses material(s) that are not their original work without documentation (accurately citing the source, using quotation marks if necessary, and obtaining appropriate permissions). Plagiarism includes copying or paraphrasing text from others or self-work (self-plagiarism which happens when an author reuses portions of his or her previously published work without the proper references), copying equations or graphical renditions not commonly known, using previously published data, and using copied or altered photographs. Plagiarism is a violation of copyright law and is punishable by statute.

Manuscripts containing plagiarized content will not be considered for publication in JOEM. All authors need to take responsibility for their manuscripts. If your name is on a manuscript, make sure all the material in the paper either is original or is properly cited and has proper permission to be reproduced. If you have a question about the originality of any part of a manuscript, verify it with your coauthors. Senior authors should pay special attention to what the junior authors are doing and where they are sending their manuscripts.

All articles submitted as revisions to JOEM are analyzed with plagiarism detection software, powered by iThenticate through the complete CrossRef database, which includes articles published on PubMed and text appearing on the Web. JOEM follows the COPE guidelines for fairly dealing with conflict of interest, falsification and fabrication of data, plagiarism, unethical experimentation, inadequate subject consent, and authorship disputes in JOEM submissions. Authors will be contacted if any issues arise during the analysis of their revisions pursuant to COPE guidelines.

Any instances of self-plagiarism will be also be examined during the iThenticate check and authors will be required to submit revisions if significant sections of self-plagiarism are found within the body of the paper. Therefore, we highly recommend that authors analyze their own work with plagiarism detection software before submission. For instances of self-plagiarism, authors will be given 14 days to submit revisions and must substantially revise the previously submitted text. We have found that most instances of self-plagiarism involve the Introduction or Methods sections.

We offer the following suggestions in these instances of self-plagiarism:

          1. Remove the duplicate text and add a properly cited statement such as "This study has been described in detail elsewhere" [citation];
          2. Enclose duplicate text in quotation marks, again with proper citation;
          3. Paraphrase text with appropriate citation;
          4. Create a properly cited Appendix containing the duplicate material to be included for online publication only.

For more information about concerns specific to self-plagiarism, please see The Ethics of Self-Plagiarism.  If you realize you have made an error of dual publication or plagiarism inadvertently, proactively contact the editorial office.

If JOEM learns of a case of plagiarism (or other claims of misconduct) after publication, JOEM will investigate. If plagiarism (or other claims of misconduct) is found, the author, the author's institution and funding agencies, and the original publication will be notified. A statement noting the form of misconduct, providing a reference to the plagiarized material (if applicable), and linking to the original paper may follow. Depending on the extent of the misconduct, the paper may also be formally retracted.

Correction and Retraction Policy

JOEM takes full responsibility to correct errors as they occur. Content that is published online or in an issue is considered the final published record and must be preserved; therefore, all changes to articles must be made as a formal correction. Corrections will be published online and in the next available issue and will be bi-directionally linked to the original article.  These corrections will then be picked up by Ovid and transmitted to indexing services and other aggregating databases.

Corrections will be reviewed and considered if they affect the publication record, the scientific integrity of the paper, or the reputation of the authors, or of JOEM.  Corrections that do not significantly affect the paper may not be approved (i.e. a spelling error).

Retractions will be considered if results are invalid or ethical guidelines have been violated (i.e. applicable cases of plagiarism or ghostwriting). All authors will be asked to sign a retraction detailing the error and how the conclusions were affected.

All decisions about corrections or retractions are made by the Editor. Author consultation may be required. In situations where coauthors disagree about a correction, the Editors will consult with independent peer-reviewers before applying the appropriate correction. The dissenting author(s) position will be noted on the correction.