Ghana Medical Journal: Submissions

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Author Guidelines

Contributions to the Ghana Medical Journal should be in English only

All submissions to the Ghana Medical Journal shall be through its online submission and review system at

The journal will consider manuscripts of the following categories for publication.

1.1 Original Research Article
Works publishable under this section include original work of suitable standard. Such work must be innovative or contribute further to well-established knowledge in a particular field. Manuscripts on all the medical specialties including the basic sciences, para-clinical and clinical sciences will be considered. Short or preliminary report on original works will be published under this section. 

1.2 Special Article
Review articles, manuscripts on special medical events, clinical notes and clinical investigation will be accepted for publication under this section. Review articles should cite original works that lead to formulation of a concept, theory or hypothesis. Review articles that seek to draw attention to current medical practice must have ample support in the form of published observations by other authors as well as the author’s own findings.

1.3 Case Report
Extremely rare clinical syndromes or presentations will be accepted for publication under this section. Also a collection of cases highlighting particular trends or problems in clinical practice are acceptable. In both instances, contributors are advised to give ample evidence in support of their claims.

1.4 Correspondence 
Correspondence on articles published in the journal or letter to the editor shall be entertained. Such correspondence must reach the editor not more than 3 months after publication of an article. The correspondence may seek further clarification on a published article. In both cases the author(s) whose article has attracted correspondence from readers will be contacted for their comments and both comments and correspondence on published articles will be published together. Letters to the editor are welcome at all times.

Apart from correspondence and invited editorials, all submissions will be subjected to peer review.

The high cost of printing requires that manuscripts are not unduly lengthy. They must be concise.

2.1 Original Research Articles
Including text, figures, tables and references should occupy not more than the space for maximum of 6000 words including tables and illustrations. Short or preliminary reports should not exceed 1500 words.

2.2 Special Articles
Review articles should not exceed 7000 words including tables and illustrations. Manuscripts on special medical events should not exceed 1500 words including figures, tables and references.

2.3 Case Report
Case reports should not exceed 2500 words including figures tables and references.

Manuscripts should be prepared in accordance with the current edition of the Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals (ICMJE Recommendations) at 

Guidelines on tables and figures, units and abbreviations, are also to be seen in the above references.

All papers should be written using Microsoft Word with .doc or docx extension in A4 format with left right, top and bottom margins of 2.5cm.

3.1 Format
Original research articles, including short reports, must have the following parts: Title, Name(s) of Author(s), Address of author(s), Running title, Summary, Keywords, Source of funding for the work, Introduction, Materials/subjects and Methods, Data analysis/calculations, Results, Discussion, Conclusion, Acknowledgements and References.

Case reports and review articles or special articles on medical events need not comply with this format.

The title, name(s) of author(s), address (es) of author(s), address for correspondence, running title and conflict of interest statement of all types of manuscript should be submitted as a separate file.

3.2 Title
The title of each manuscript should not have more than 20 words, or 100 characters, and should express clearly, the aims of the work.

3.3 Names of Authors, Academic Qualifications, Title.
The name of the principal author should appear first, followed by other authors. The names of the authors should be stated in the format [First name} [Middle name initial] and [Surname]. The name and address of the author for correspondence must be indicated on the page for author name(s) and address (es). This information should be in a separate file and uploaded as Supplementary file during submission of the manuscript.

3.4 Summary
The summary should contain not more than 250 words and must be structured. The Summary should state:
Objectives: This should provide a clear statement of the main aim of the study and the major hypothesis or research question asked
Design: Describe the study design (observational or analytical) indicting such features as pre-post, retrospective, randomization, placebo controlled, case control etc;
Setting: include the level of health of care, clinical department, community or groups; number of partici-pating centres
Participants: Who, how selected, what entry and exclusion criteria, how many entering and completing the study
Interventions: What, how, for how long
Main outcome measures: Those planned in protocol, those finally measured (if different, explain why);
Results: Main results with levels of significance and 95% confidence intervals as appropriate; and 
Conclusions: Primary conclusions and their implications, suggest areas for further research if appropriate.

3.5 Keywords
These should include words that emphasis the theme or central point of the research. Keywords should as far as possible be selected from the Medical Subject Heading (MeSH) list of Medline. A maximum of five (5) keywords should be listed.

3.6 Running Title
Where the title of the manuscript is lengthy, the running title may take a shortened form to reflect the main objectives of the paper. However, no running title is required if the title is short, for instance, not exceeding four words. The running title should not have more than 5 words or 30 characters arranged one after the other. A hyphen is counted as one character.

3.7 References
The number of references should be kept to a minimum. They should be numbered consecutively as they occur in the text. Identify references in the text, tables and legends by Arabic numerals placed in super-script. Where the citation is at the end of a sentence it should be placed after the ‘full stop’.

The title of journals should be abbreviated according to the style used in Medline.

Reference should be based on the ICEMJ recommendations. The title of journals and books in the listed references should be in italics. The references should be listed in the order in which they appear in the text

4.1 Ethical Clearance

Clinical studies are expected to conform to the Proposed International Guidelines for Biomedical Research involving Human Subjects issued by CIOMS, (Geneva 1982). Statements about ethical clearance (if appropriate) and obtaining participants’ informed consent should be included in the manuscript. Experimental animals must be properly anaesthetized to avoid suffering and anaesthetic procedure fully explained in the text. Authors are required to provide evidence of ethical approval for their study.

Authors who do not comply with the said code of ethics both for humans and animals will have their manuscripts rejected.

4.2 Originality of Articles
Manuscripts submitted to the Ghana Medical Journal must not have been submitted for publication in another journal. The laboratory or institute of origin of research and the role of each author in the case of multiple authorship, must be indicated. Manuscripts must be accompanied by a written declaration that the materials have not been submitted for publication either in part or in full, in another journal. Such declaration may be included in the Submission letter.

The Ghana Medical Journal subscribes to the recommendations of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) recommendations on publication misconduct including plagiarism.

4.3 Conflict of Interest

Authors and guest editors must disclose specific information relating to any financial relationship they may have with a sponsoring organization and any interest that organization presents, as well as with any for-profit product discussed or implied in the text of the manuscript. Helpful guidelines related to disclosure statements have been published by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (see

5.1 All correspondence should be addressed to the Editor-in-chief, Ghana Medical Journal, P. O. Box 1596, Accra, Ghana. Send e-mail correspondence to

5.2 Peer Review

The journal uses blind peer-review and manuscripts should be anonymized for this purpose. Authors should submit the full manuscript devoid of authors names, institutional affiliations and acknowledgement. There should also be no headers or footers. This document should be uploaded as the Main document/file.

A second file containing Title, author information and affiliation, running and conflict of interest statement title should be uploaded as Supplementary file.

Manuscripts that do not conform to the requirements of this journal shall be returned to the author(s) within two weeks from the date of submission. Returned manuscripts may be accepted for consideration if they are modified to an acceptable form.

Manuscripts are subject to peer-review and/or editorial revision to clarify them. As a general rule each submission is sent to two experts in the subject area of the manuscript for peer review. Additional reviewers may be used if the peer review decisions are not in agreement. Manuscripts may also be sent to statisticians for the review of that aspect of the study. The Editor-in-Chief makes the final decision on all manuscripts guided by the peer reviewers and the Editors. Where authors disagree with a review decision the Editor-in-Chief will have the decisions reviewed by another expert. The Editor-in-Chef makes the final decision.

5.3 Cover Letter or Submission Letter

The letter submitting the manuscript to the Editor-in-Chief should be on institutional letterhead; and signed by ALL authors.

5.4 Reprints

There shall be no reprints as published articles may be freely downloaded from the journal website.

5.5 Frequency of Publishing
The Ghana Medical Journal is published quarterly online and in print.

Submission Preparation Checklist

As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.

  1. The submission has not been previously published, nor is it before another journal for consideration (or an explanation has been provided in Comments to the Editor).
  2. The submission file is in Microsoft Word document file format.
  3. Where available, URLs for the references have been provided.
  4. The text is single-spaced; uses a 10-point font; employs italics, rather than underlining (except with URL addresses); and all illustrations, figures, and tables are placed within the text at the appropriate points, rather than at the end.
  5. The text adheres to the stylistic and bibliographic requirements outlined in the Author Guidelines, which is found in About the Journal.
  6. If submitting to a peer-reviewed section of the journal, the instructions in Ensuring a Blind Review have been followed.
  7. Author names should be First Name Middle initial Surname (John B. Doe). Do not add titles and qualifications
  8.  Give full institutional address of each author
  9. Provide information on Funding for the study
  10. Make sure Keywords are consistent with Medline MeSH expressions
  11. Research Ethics Approval All manuscript should indicate the name, institution and reference number of ethical approvals obtained on the study protocol. In the online submission process one of the checklist items is to indicate that ethical approval was obtained for the research.
  12. Check citations in the text (Arabic numeral in superscript) 1 and make sure that citations at the end of a sentence are placed after the full stop NOT before it. They should NOT be in parenthesis (), [ ] or underlined _.More than one citation should be separated by commas (,) like this1,2 If bibliographic software is used to generate the list of references make sure they are not placed as footnotes or endnotes.
  13. Check that the list of references is consistent with the citations and that the Journal names are in italics and as abbreviated as in Medline. The format is: Authors Title Journal Name Year; Volume (issue): pages
  14. Internet references should indicate date of accession.
  15. References to unpublished communications should be kept in the text and not listed in the list of references.
  16. Tables should contain information relevant to findings and not a long list frequency data. Tables should be constructed using the Microsoft Word Table format in columns and rows. Data should not be separated with Tabs or spaces.
  17. Figures should be clearly labeled and with appropriate caption. Pie charts containing less than 4 variables should be reported in words in the text. Avoid putting legend/title to Table in the first row of the Table. Give Figures separate legends. Do NOT include the legend or title in the figure.
  18. Clinical and radiological images should be data size-minimized and presented in the JPEG format. They should be clear and sharp.


Copyright Notice

Articles published in the Ghana Medical Journal may not be published elsewhere without the consent of the publishers. Request for consent for reproduction of material published in the Ghana Medical Journal should be addressed to the Editor-in-Chief. The publisher of this Journal reserves the right of copyright of all articles published in the Journal. It should also be understood by all authors that articles approved for publication in the journal are also deemed for publication online by the publisher.


ISSN: 0016-9560
AJOL African Journals Online