Healthcare-related research is largely regional. Put simply, this is because disease burdens differ between world regions. Even global burdens, such as ischaemic heart disease and cancer, display distinctive characteristics in certain regions that are not seen in others. Regional differences in infrastructure, resources and human capital further compound the differences seen, as they affect the way in which the local scientific community can interact with the local disease burden. As such, it seems fair to assume that healthcare-related research ought to be regionally distributed.
Publishing health research
I don't know how we can go beyond journals. In addition to the fact that journals fulfil a limited need, many African health practitioners are too overwhelmed to seat down and write an article on their daily experiences & tie this with broad health literature. If we limit knowledge sharing to journals and their rigorous reviewing processes, we miss a lot of real-time 'truths'. Emphasis on journals suggest the written word is the only way knowledge about health issues can travel.
All my career years in WHO (over 29 years) I always believed that the electronic publishing should not replace paper based publishing. They should complement each other. Publishers who think that electronic publishing should replace paper publishing are wrong. I made this position very clear and implemented it when I was director in WHO.
Many will be familiar with the need for "research to policy" or R2P. But that in itself is a shortened form of "research to policy to practice" or R2P2P. Clearly, health policies should be based on the best and most appropriate research. But that is not enough. If sound health policies don't then go into clinical practice, they are just empty words. Effort needs to be devoted to each link in this chain.
Najeeb al-Shorbaji hit the nail on the head last year when he wrote in a submission to this email list: "Health workers and most practitioners in the field do not need scientific articles written by academicians. They need practical information, best practices, case studies, stories from the field, lessons learned and guidance on how to do things".
At Africa Health journal, that is precisely what we have tried to do since launch in October 1978.
'The research literature on open access (OA) publishing has mainly dealt with journals publishing in English, and studies focusing on OA journals in other languages are less common. This article addresses this gap via a case study focusing on Chinese-language OA journals. It starts with the identification of the major characteristics of this market, followed by eight semi-structured interviews to explore the key motivations behind Chinese-language OA publishing and perceived barriers.
The Regional Index Medici play a major and central role in improving access to health research from developing countries. This is evidenced by the statistics you have provided but also from the fact that research published in journals from the global south is only or at least mainly published in local journals. The efforts made by other WHO regional offices and by WHO/HQ to create the Global Health Library which includes the region indexes needs to be highlighted as a major sources to access research from developing countries.
The reason why most researchers from my part of the world publish in predatory journals is because of the pressure of 'publish or you perish' threat from their institutions.
lecturers want to publish fast so they go for the predatory journals that have shorter review period, one_two weeks, less publication charges and quick publication period of bi monthly or monthly. Also, the institutions that insist on the publish or perish slogan are read to accept any publication without verifying the authenticity of the journal.
Subject: [hifa] How can health research from LMICs be made more accessible? (14) Medical Council of India (2)
The editors of several Indian journals have taken up this matter. It was discussed by a team of them, when we had the conference of the World Association of Medical Editors (WAME) in October last year. Some of them got together and wrote this article