From 6 June to 3 July 2016 HIFA hosted a thematic discussion around an important and neglected question: How can health research from low- and middle-income countries be made more accessible? This builds upon a previous, broader discussion on Access to Health Research, which led to the Manila Declaration on the Availability and Use of Health Research Information in and for Low- and Middle-income Countries in the Asia Pacific Region (26 August 2015).
Key issues raised
- Low research capacity
- Failure to publish research
- Publishing charges
- Prejudice against national journals
- Prejudice against open access journals
- Cochrane: moving towards open access and increased engagement of LMICs
- World Association of Medical Editors (WAME) Position Statement on Promoting Global Health.
The discussion raised several further questions:
- What percentage of health research in LMICs is never published?
- What more can be done to retain health researchers in LMICs?
- What percentage of dissertations (in Africa, in LMICs) are published? How can we encourage more academics to publish their dissertations?
- What can be done to remove prejudice against national journals?
- What can be done to remove prejudice against open access journals? What can be done to help researchers distinguish clearly between predatory journals and reputable OA journals?
- What is the current position of the Medical Council of India in relation to 'e-journals'? What is the position of other professional bodies in other countries?
- What is WAME doing (or would like to do) to help make the various parts of the statement a reality? What can other organisations (publishers, professional associations, HIFA) do to help accelerate progress?
If you can help answer any of these questions, please join HIFA!
Neil Pakenham-Walsh, HIFA Coordinator
On behalf of the HIFA Access to Health Research working group