The editorial board of PJO makes recommendations on all editorial policy decisions. The editor-in-chief is the chairperson in all editorial board meetings and is responsible for implementation of policy decisions taken by the editorial board. The editorial board meetings are held twice a year to quarterly.
PJO adopts the ICMJE and the ‘World Association of Medical Editors’ definition of editorial freedom which delineates that editors-in-chief holds full authority over the entire editorial content of their journal and the timing of publication of that content. Journal owners do not have the right to interfere in the articles selection, editing and time of publishing, either, directly or by indirectly influencing the decisions. Editor’s decisions must be based on the quality of work and its importance to the readers and not on the commercial interests. Editors are free to express critical without fear of retribution, but with full responsibility.
POLICY OF SELECTION OF EDITORS, REVIEWERS, OTHER EDITORIAL BOARD MEMBERS
Human Resource policies in relation to selection of Editors, Reviewers, other Editorial Board members are based upon vision and mission of Ophthalmological society of Pakistan (OSP). Decisions are taken by Central Council, which is an elected body of OSP. The performance of editorial board is assessed using mutually agreed-upon measures and various journal metrics.
PROCESSING OF MANUSCRIPT
Initial Assessment: On receiving an article for publication, an acknowledgement letter is sent to the author. After that, the submitted article is initially assessed by a staff editor. It is ensured that manuscript is prepared in accordance with the uniform requirements submitted to bio-medical journal as approved by ICMJE guidelines. It is also evaluated that the article is in accordance with the PJO format, technically correct and falls under the aims and scope of the journal. The staff bibliographer also examines and authenticates the references and checks for plagiarism. The manuscript is also assessed for statistical analysis by the Journal’s statistician. Deficiencies found by the editor and statistician are communicated to author for redressing the article at the initial stage.
Peer Review: After initial assessment and receiving of the redressed article, the selected papers are sent to two reviewers for peer review. PJO follows double blind peer-review procedure. Two weeks' time is given to reviewers for reviewing the manuscript. If reviewers fail to send back their feedback in the stipulated time, reminders are sent. Comments from two reviewers are mandatory for review of a manuscript. Once the reviewed manuscript is received from both the reviewers, their comments/suggestions are communicated to the author for revision. Revisions must be returned to the PJO within two weeks. The Corresponding Author must reply to each point made in the revision request and may state points of disagreement with the reviewer's comments. In case of conflict or disputed articles, the matter is discussed with the Chief Editor and finally to a third reviewer as nominated by him.
Editing and proof reading: After receiving the revised article, it is sent for editing and proofreading of text for correct grammar, spelling and medical terminology, ensuring incorporation of all the necessary/relevant minutest details in the article. The final proofs are sent to the corresponding authors for approval of the corrected manuscript. Three days are given to author to return their feedback failing which the manuscript is processed as final. The Managing Editor checks final proofs at the dummy stage before sending them for printing.
PJO observes/follows the ICMJE, PMDC and HEC guidelines/criteria for all types of plagiarism. The same can be accessed at www.icmje.org , www.pmdc and www.hec.gov.pk it is the authors' responsibility to aaprise themselves of plagiarism in any form including paraphrasing and self – plagiarism. Manuscripts submitted to PJO can be sent to HEC, other medical journals' editors and international agencies for authentication of originality. The disciplinary committee of PJO would deal with cases of plagiarism and comprise of the staff, editors and the Chief Editor or his representative.
For a plagiarized article in processing, the identification of act will lead to dropping of article from further processing/consideration of publication. The author will be required to give an explanation on demand. In case of an unsatisfactory reply, the matter will be referred to the disciplinary committee that may decide the course of action. For a published article, the allegedly plagiarized article will be temporarily retracted from publication and a notice to the effect will be published in the PJO. The author will be served an explanation demand. In case of non response in the stipulated time or unsatisfactory explanation, the article will be permanently retracted and the author will be on watch. HEC, PMDC and author's institute will also be informed. The author(s) will have to provide documentary proof of retraction from publication, if such a defense is pleaded. Those claiming intellectual / idea or data theft of an article must provide documentary proof in their claim.
The names and email addresses entered in this journal site will be used exclusively for the stated purposes of this journal and will not be made available for any other purpose or to any other party.
POLICY ON REJECTED ARTICLES
When a manuscript is rejected, the rejected material is deleted from the editorial systems of PJO after one year. When a manuscript is published, PJO keeps copies of the original submission, reviews, revisions, and correspondence for at three years.
POLICY ON PUBLICATION MISCONDUCT
According to the ICMJE recommendations, scientific misconduct in research and non-research publications includes but is not necessarily limited to data fabrication; data falsification, including deceptive manipulation of images; purposeful failure to disclose conflicts of interest; and plagiarism.
PJO deals with such situations by first asking the corresponding author an explanation in view of the available evidence. If the authors does not respond or is unable to satisfy the editorial board, the manuscript is dropped from consideration if unpublished and retracted if published. Notice of retraction will be given in print and on the website (as described in the retraction policy of the PJO). The authors will be blacklisted for further submissions and considerations at the journal. The authors' institutional Head will also be informed of the action.
PERMISSION FOR RE-PUBLICATION
If tables, illustrations or photographs, which have already been published, are to be republished or to be used in any manuscript, a letter of permission for re-publication should be obtained from author (s) as well as the editor of the journal where it was previously published. Written permission to reproduce photographs of patients, should be sent with the manuscript.
STATEMENTS OF PRIORITY POLICY
The statements of priority (such as "we are the first to report...") should be avoided in the manuscripts because of the inability to be familiar with all published works or presentations on a subject. If ever, it is needed, the statement should be "we are unaware of previous reports of this finding and could find no reference to it in a computerized search (include the name of the database, such as PubMed)."
POLICY ON HUMAN AND ANIMAL RIGHTS
All researchers should ensure that the planning conduct and reporting of human research are in accordance with the Helsinki Declaration as revised in 2013 (www.wma.net/policies-post/wma-declaration-of-helsinkiethical-principles-for-medical-research-involving-humansubjects/).
When reporting experiments on animals, please refer to guidance on animal research ethics (available from the International Association of Veterinary Editors’ Consensus Author Guidelines on Animal Ethics and Welfare).
POLICY ON ARTICLE CORRECTIONS, ARTICLE WITHDRAWAL, RETRACTION, REMOVAL AND REPLACEMENT
Corrections: If a correction is needed, PJO publishes a correction notice as soon as possible with detailed changes. The correction is on a numbered print page that is included in Table of Contents. The journal may, if necessary, also post a new article version with details of the changes from the original version and the date(s) on which the changes were made.
Article withdrawal: If the authors want to withdraw the manuscript during its processing, they should send an email notifying as to their intention with the signatures of all the authors. The withdrawal request must be complete, scanned and sent to the editor. A final letter from the editorial office for withdrawal of the manuscript will then be dispatched. Electronic signatures are not accepted. Without a formal letter of withdrawal, a manuscript is not considered withdrawn and use of such a manuscript elsewhere will be considered as an ethical misconduct.
Article retraction: If an article needs to be retracted because of multiple submissions, bogus claims of authorship, plagiarism, fraudulent use of data, a retraction note titled “Retraction: [article title]” signed by the editor is published in the subsequent issue of the journal and listed in the contents list.
Article removal (legal limitations): In a case, if an article is clearly defamatory, or infringes others’ legal rights, or where the article is, or we have good reason to expect it will be, the subject of a court order, or where the article, if acted upon, might pose a serious health risk, the metadata (Title and Authors) will be retained. The text will be replaced with a screen indicating the article has been removed for legal reasons.
Article replacement: In cases where the authors of the original article may wish to retract the flawed original and replace it with a corrected version, the procedures for retraction will be followed and retraction notice will publish a link to the corrected re-published article.
PJO provides an esteemed and distinguished forum for advertising ethical products. However, the editors of PJO hold themselves to high standards and the journal is not dominated by advertisements and advertising agencies. Advertisers are not allowed at any cost to influence editorial decisions. Advertisements are clearly identifiable as advertisements. Editors of PJO have full and final authority for approving print and online advertisements and for enforcing advertising policy. All advertising should be related to the practice of ophthalmology. PJO also does not advertise the products which are harmful to health.
DATA SHARING POLICY
As per ICMJE recommendations.