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Policies

Contents

 

Open Access Policy

In accordance with the Budapest Open Access Initiative (BOAI) definition of open access, Journal of the Georgia Public Health Association is an open access journal. All content is freely available without charge to the user or his/her institution. Users are allowed to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of the articles, or use them for any other lawful purpose, without asking prior permission from the publisher or the author. Authors retain control over the integrity of their work and the right to be properly acknowledged and cited. The jGPHA Open Access Policy was adopted by the jGPHA Editorial Board on May 2, 2016.

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Review Process

Journal of the Georgia Public Health Association is double-blind peer reviewed and published four (4) times per year. If you have concerns about the terms of submission or review, please contact the Editor.

When an author submits a manuscript to jGPHA, the journal’s editors review it to ensure that it meets the guidelines and evaluate its appropriateness for the journal's readership. The manuscript then undergoes double-blind peer review. Please note that peer reviewers evaluate but do not edit the manuscript. Editorial staff members edit manuscripts for organization, grammar, style, format, clarity, and forward them to an editorial assistant. A proof of the accepted document is created and forwarded to the submitting author for review. Proofs must be carefully checked by authors and returned within three (3) days of receipt. Authors may offer suggestions on these edits but do not have the right of refusal. The journal’s editor makes final decisions on publications. The response time for manuscripts is typically 6 – 8 weeks from submission.

All aspects of the submission and notification process are managed electronically. A cover letter indicating adherence to the jGPHA's five ethical compliance guidelines should be submitted with the manuscript (see Ethics Compliance Guidelines below). Prior to publication, a publishing agreement must be signed, dated, and submitted to the issue editor. Contributors are responsible for obtaining permission from copyright owners if they use an illustration, table, or lengthy quote (100+ words) that has been published elsewhere.

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Conflicts of Interest Statement

For jGPHA, conflicts of interest (COIs) exist when there is a divergence between an individual’s private interests (competing interests) and his/her responsibilities to scientific and publishing activities for which a reasonable observer might wonder if the individual’s behavior or judgment was motivated by considerations related to his/her other interests.

COIs may influence the judgment of authors, reviewers, and editors; these conflicts often are not immediately apparent to others or to the reviewer. There are several types of competing interests. They may be financial ties, academic commitments, personal relationship(s), political/religious beliefs and/or institutional affiliations. As a condition of reviewing a manuscript, all declarations about COIs must be provided in writing. If any are declared, they will be published with the article. If there is doubt about whether a circumstance represents a conflict, it must be disclosed.

  • Funding Sources. Sources of full or partial funding or other support for the research must be declared and should be described in an acknowledgement if the manuscript is published.
  • Authors. All authors will be asked to report financial, academic, personal, and other COIs related to the research, and jGPHA will publish all COIs (or their absence) that are relevant to the manuscript being considered.
  • Peer Reviewers. Reviewers will be asked if they have a COI with the content or authors of a manuscript; if so, they will be removed from the review process.
  • Editors. Editors will not make editorial decisions or be involved in the editorial process of a manuscript submitted to jGPHA if they have a COI as described above.

The jGPHA Conflicts of Interest Statement, based on the World Association of Medical Editors (WAME), was adopted by the jGPHA Editorial Board on May 2, 2016.

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Ethics Compliance Guidelines

Based on the Guidelines of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) Code of Conduct and Best Practices for Journal Editors, jGPHA adheres to the following ethical guidelines. At submission, authors must confirm that:

  1. The work has not been published before (except in the form of an abstract or as part of a published lecture, review, or thesis).
  2. The work is not under consideration elsewhere.
  3. Copyright has not been breached in seeking its publication.
  4. The research has been approved by an Institutional Review Board (if applicable).
  5. The publication has been approved by all co-authors.
Principles of Transparency
  • Peer review process: For jGPHA, peer review is defined as obtaining advice on individual manuscripts from experts in the field who are not part of the journal’s editorial staff.
  • Governing Body: jGPHA is led by an Editorial Board with members representing academic institutions, local and state health departments, boards of health, and student public health organizations. The full names and affiliations of the journal’s editors are provided on the Editorial Board page.
  • Editorial team/contact information: The full names and affiliations of the journal’s editors as well as contact information appear on the jGPHA homepage and on the Policies page.
  • Author fees: jGPHA Charge & fee policies are stated below on the Policies page.
  • Copyright Notice: jGPHA Copyright and reuse licensing policies are stated below on the Policies page.
  • Process for identification of and dealing with allegations of research misconduct: jGPHA editors will take reasonable steps to identify and prevent the publication of papers where research misconduct has occurred, including plagiarism, citation manipulation, and data falsification/fabrication, among others. The Plagiarism Policy is stated below on the Policies page. The jGPHA editors will follow COPE’s guidelines in dealing with allegations.
  • Ownership and management: jGPHA is published by the Georgia Public Health Association and managed by the Institute of Public & Preventive Health, Augusta University.
  • Web site: The jGPHA website is available at https://digitalcommons.georgiasouthern.edu/jGPHA.
  • Name of journal: The name is Journal of the Georgia Public Health Association, also known as the Journal of GPHA or jGPHA. Based on the List of Title Word Abbreviations, the jGPHA scientific citation is J Ga Public Health Assoc.
  • Conflicts of interest: jGPHA policies on handling potential conflicts of interest of authors, reviewers, editors, and policies are stated above on the Policies page.
  • Access:The jGPHA open access statement is stated above on the Policies page.
  • Publishing schedule: jGPHA is published quarterly or four (4) times annually: Spring, Summer, Winter, and Fall.
  • Archiving: The jGPHA archiving policy is stated below on the Policies page.

The jGPHA Ethics Compliance Policy, based on COPE guidelines, was adopted by the jGPHA Editorial Board on May 2, 2016.

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Guidelines for Submission

If you would like to submit a manuscript for publication consideration in Journal of the Georgia Public Health Association (jGPHA), please use this form or submit your manuscript to the editor at: editor@gapha.org

The Editor invites original research and related papers in health promotion/disease prevention, community engagement, advocacy, and public health policy. Submissions must adhere to formatting instructions and will be judged for quality and relevance through peer-review. The editors suggest that authors review a published paper from the journal prior to submission and use the provided templates to assist in proper formatting. Submit manuscripts according to the following guidelines. Following are descriptions of articles for publication in jGPHA. Authors are invited to review the manuscript checklists and select from one of the categories listed below. If you have questions or concerns about these guidelines, please contact the Editor.


Full Manuscript     (Download the Full Manuscript Template)
Guidelines for full manuscripts include:

  1. Font: Times New Roman, font size 12.
  2. Margins: 1” (top, bottom, left, right).
  3. Spacing: The manuscript must be double spaced.
  4. Page Limitations: Submissions are limited to 20 pages in length.
  5. Title: The title should include a description of the work, set in Times New Roman Bold, font size 14, with a word limit not exceeding 15 words.
  6. Authors and Affiliations: The names of all authors, their degrees, and affiliations (name, city, state) should follow the title.
  7. Corresponding Author: An author who takes primary responsibility for communication with jGPHA during the manuscript submission, peer review, and publication process must be identified. Contact information (name, mailing address, email address, and telephone number) should be listed following the keywords. NOTE: Correspondence from jGPHA will be provided to all authors if their email addresses are provided on the initial manuscript submission.
  8. Abstract: A 300-word, structured abstract is required, containing the following bolded headings: Background, Methods, Results, and Conclusions. The abstract should describe the main objectives of the study and be free of citations.
  9. Keywords: Keywords used in the manuscript, up to 7, should follow the abstract.
  10. Introduction: Included in this section is the background to the work, purpose, and its significance. The objectives and hypothesis (if appropriate) should be included. References should be imbedded within the text (ex: Jones et al., 2016) and reflect the current literature.
  11. Methods: This section describes the public health approach supporting the effort. Institutional Review Board approval should be indicated.
  12. Results: This section should present enough detail to permit readers to fully replicate the authors’ effort. As appropriate, subsections (e.g., sample/population, recruitment, statistical analyses) are recommended.
  13. Discussion: In this section, authors should interpret the results, describe limitations, and outline the implications of their work for public health.
  14. Conclusions: This section should elucidate how the results support the purpose, aims, and/or hypothesis.
  15. Tables and Figures: Authors number tables and figures and place them closest to their mention within the text.
  16. Acknowledgement: Funding sources (including agency name and grant number) and individuals/organizations supporting the authors’ work should be included in this section.
  17. References: jGPHA uses in-text citations (e.g., author's last name, year). References should be listed in alphabetical order at the end of the manuscript and formatted based on the following examples:
    • Book Chapters: Name of the author (last name, first initial). Title of the book. Name of the chapter. Volume no. Edition. Edited by (last name, first initial). City, State; Year: Page numbers.
    • Thesis: Name of the author (last name, first initial): Title. Degree thesis. Name of the University, Name of the Department; Year.
    • Journal: Names of the authors (last name, first initial). Title. Journal abbreviation, Year, Volume (Issue): Page numbers.
    • In-Press Article: Names of the authors (last name, first initial): Title. Journal abbreviation, in press. Authors are responsible for the accuracy and completeness of references and for correct in-text citations.
  18. Appendix: The jGPHA submission should stand on its own; however, other items that provide details that remain central to the manuscript maybe needed. Traditional text-based appendix material, for example, survey instruments, data, and programs, are acceptable supplemental materials for the appendices, which should follow the references.

BRIEF Report     (Download the BRIEF Report Template)
Authors are invited to submit short articles for publication in the jGPHA. In addition to following the jGPHA formatting requirements outlined for full manuscripts, authors should note the following general specifications for the Brief Report:

  1. A limit of 2 figures or 2 tables or 1 of each is permitted. Photographs, illustrations, or other information that complements the manuscript are encouraged.
  2. A 4 sentence structured abstract with the following headings: Background, Methods, Results, Conclusions, is required.
  3. A maximum of 5 key words must follow the abstract.
  4. Organize the 1000 word manuscript with the following headings:
    Introduction (≥100 words)
    Methods (≥300 words)
    Results (≥300 words)
    Discussion/Conclusions (≥300 words)
  5. Acknowledgements may be included.
  6. Include a maximum of 12 references following the format outlined for full manuscripts.
  7. The jGPHA submission should stand on its own; however, other items that provide details that remain central to the manuscript maybe needed. Traditional text-based appendix material, for example, survey instruments, data, and programs, are acceptable supplemental materials for the appendices, which should follow the references.

Research Protocol     (Download the Research Protocol Template)
Research protocol articles are for proposed or ongoing public health research, and should provide a detailed account of the hypothesis, rationale, and methodology of the study. Submissions are not considered if the authors have other articles relating to the protocol that are published or under consideration. Research protocols for funded or unfunded research are appropriate for submission. Proof of ethics approval by an Institutional Review Board is required and authors must provide the relevant documentation at the time of manuscript submission. In addition to following the jGPHA formatting requirements outlined for full manuscripts, authors should note the following general specifications for the Research Protocol:

  • Introduction
    The introduction should explain the background to the study, its aims, a summary of the existing literature, policy context, why this study was necessary, and its contribution to public health. Specific aims, hypotheses, and questions the research is designed to answer, including primary and secondary outcomes, should be included in this section.
  • Methods
    The methods section should describe: 1) the design and setting; 2) characteristics of participants and recruitment process, including eligibility and exclusion criteria; and 3) all processes, interventions and comparisons. Authors should clearly define data collection or survey measures and describe how they will be administered. The validity and reliability of measures should be detailed (e.g., administered blind at pretest/posttest, data to be analyzed blind to condition), should be included. If appropriate, a sample size calculation should be described with statements about assumptions of effect size. A detailed statistical analysis plan should follow. This section should end with a research timeline.
  • Results
    Although results are not required for research protocols, a statement related to anticipated results must be included. Preliminary findings are permitted, including pilot study or formative research results.
  • Discussion
    This section should include a discussion of any practical or operational issues involved in performing the study and any issues not covered in other sections.
  • Future Direction
    Authors must include a statement related to the future direction of the research.
  • References
    jGPHA uses in-text citations (e.g., authors last name, year). References should be listed in alphabetical order at the end of the manuscript and formatted based on guidelines provided for full manuscripts.
  • Appendix
    The jGPHA submission should stand on its own; however, other items that provide details that remain central to the manuscript maybe needed. Traditional text-based appendix material, for example, survey instruments, data, and programs, are acceptable supplemental materials for the appendices, which should follow the references.

Practice Notes     (Download the Practice Notes Template)
Practice Notes should present public health in action at the state, county, city, community, or local/state health department level. Practice-based evidence, practitioner-directed initiatives, and specific programmatic examples are accepted. Topics may include, for example, epidemiologic notes, natural/build environmental health interventions, surveillance or monitoring, or behavioral interventions. In addition to following the jGPHA formatting requirements outlined for full manuscripts, authors should note the following general specifications for Practice Notes:

  • Introduction
    The introduction should explain the rationale for the program and its purpose/goal, supported by published public health literature (e.g., similar evidence- based efforts). If applicable, authors should include the subheading Theoretical Framework describing the key constructs of concepts employed.
  • Methods
    The methods section should describe: 1) the setting; 2) characteristics of the targeted community, participants, and recruitment process; and 3) all processes, interventions and comparisons. This section should end with a project timeline.
  • Results
    Although results are not required for practice notes, a statement related to anticipated results must be included. Preliminary findings are permitted, including pilot test or formative results.
  • Discussion
    This section should include a discussion of operational issues involved in performing the project and any issues not covered in other sections.
  • Implications for Public Health
    Authors must include a concluding statement describing the implications of the project to public health.
  • Appendix
    The jGPHA submission should stand on its own; however, other items that provide details that remain central to the manuscript maybe needed. Traditional text-based appendix material, for example, survey instruments, data, and programs, are acceptable supplemental materials for the appendices, which should follow the references.

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Copyright & Licensing Terms

All papers published in Journal of the Georgia Public Health Association are distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International license (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work ("first published in the Journal of the Georgia Public Health Association…") is properly cited with original URL and bibliographic citation information. The complete bibliographic information, a link to the original publication on https://digitalcommons.georgiasouthern.edu/jGPHA, as well as this copyright and license information must be included. Authors retain all copyrights without restrictions, and agree to the CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 license for their work as a condition of publication.

End users' rights under the CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 license are outlined here. For all other purposes, permission must be obtained from the author.

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Plagiarism Policy

Journal of the Georgia Public Health Association may use Similarity Check, a multi-publisher initiative, to selectively screen article submissions for originality. Similarity Check uses the iThenticate software, which checks submissions against millions of published research papers (the Similarity Check database), documents on the web, and other relevant sources. These submitted papers are not retained in the Similarity Check system after they have been checked. Read more at Crossref's Similarity Check & Researchers page.

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Charges & Fees

Journal of the Georgia Public Health Association levies no submission charges, or charges or fees for publication of accepted articles.

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Digital Archiving

Journal of the Georgia Public Health Association is preserved using CLOCKSS, a leading preservation archive that guarantees persistent access to journal content for the very long term. Articles also receive Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs) through Crossref to ensure they can always be found.

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