- Health Information
- Public Health Bulletin
Information for Authors
Information for Authors
Purpose of the Bulletin
| Submitting manuscripts
| Presenting your manuscript
| General references
| Language and style
| Authors' names and affiliations
| Word length
| Measurement units, symbols and abbreviations
| Preferred terminology
| Figures and tables
| Text boxes
| Citation and references
| Peer review
Purpose of the Bulletin
The NSW Public Health Bulletin aims to provide its readers with population health data and information to support public health action. Readers include public health professionals within the NSW Ministry of Health, health services throughout NSW, as well as other interested readers in Australia and overseas.
The Bulletin accepts proffered and commissioned papers along with short reports.
The Bulletin is published by CSIRO Publishing and is available at: http://www.publish.csiro.au/nid/226.htm
Send your manuscript in Microsoft Word format as an email attachment to: email@example.com
The manuscript should be accompanied by a covering letter listing the names, institutional affiliations, addresses and contact numbers of all authors. The letter should also contain a statement that the manuscript has not been submitted or accepted for publication elsewhere. The letter should either be sent in hard copy to the editor or scanned and sent as an email attachment.
Authors should obtain the appropriate clearances for the material contained in their paper from their directors or supervisors before submission. A signed Licence to Publish form should also be included with the submission.
Suggestions of possible reviewers are welcome and their contact details should be provided on the covering letter.
Presenting your manuscript
Manuscripts should be 1500-2000 words, excluding tables, figures and references. An abstract of 150-200 words is required for all papers, unless otherwise specified.
Papers should be submitted with double spacing throughout. A recommended text is 12-point Arial. All pages of the manuscript must be numbered consecutively, including those carrying references, tables and figures, all of which are to be placed after the text.
Please remove all track changes and mark-up alterations, style codes, EndNote codes and automatic footnoting. Superscript numbers for references should be manually inserted and checked against the numbering of the reference list at the end.
Graphs from Excel or statistical analysis programs should not be embedded in the Word document but presented separately at the end of the manuscript.
Authors using EndNote or other referencing programs must finalise and remove field codes before submission. This ensures that references are visible and can be edited in documents across different Microsoft programs.
To remove field codes in EndNote:
- Open the Word document
- Select the EndNote X submenu from the Tools menu
- Select ‘Remove Field Codes’
- A copy of the document without field codes appears in a new document window
- Save this document with a new file name and use this new document for electronic submission.
Follow the advice of the Australian Style manual for authors, editors and printers (6th edition, 2002).
Use the first spelling given in The Australian Oxford Dictionary or The Macquarie Dictionary (3rd edition).
Use the International System of Units as given in <I>The International System of Units</I> (SI), Organisation Intergouvemementale de la Convention du Mètre (8th edition, 2006) (http://www.bipm.org/en/si/si_brochure/
Language and style
The Bulletin is accessible to a broad readership and therefore favours jargon-free articles.
Authors' names and affiliations
List authors’ names with first name, middle initial and last name (e.g. Thomas D. Smith).
List professional affiliations (e.g. Faculty of the Built Environment, The University of New South Wales; Communicable Diseases Branch, NSW Ministry of Health).
The corresponding author’s email should be included.
The title should be concise and informative and should contain keywords to assist with electronic searching for the article.
An abstract of 150-200 words should precede the introductory section of all papers, unless otherwise specified. Abstracts should be as complete, accurate and simply expressed as possible.
The format of an abstract is determined by the type of paper presented. It is important that the abstract accurately reflects the content of the paper. The following questions provide a guide in preparing an unstructured abstract:
- What topic or issue does your paper seek to address?
- Why is this topic important?
- What methods did you follow (if applicable)?
- What are the key points and/or findings of your paper?
If your manuscript suits a standard scientific abstract structure then we suggest using the following headings: Aim, Methods, Results and Conclusion. See http://www.icmje.org/manuscript_1prepare.html.
Abstracts do not include references, acronyms, trade names or any abbreviations apart from those of Australian states and territories.
In general, spelling follows The Australian Oxford Dictionary, with ‘ise’ spelling. Capitalisation, hyphenation, punctuation and abbreviations should be uniform throughout.
- Use lower case whenever possible.
- Use lower case for general statements (e.g. all states and territories).
- Use a capital letter for specific titles.
- Use lower case for occupations (e.g. the director, the health promotion officer, the cleaner, editor, doctor, professor).
- Use a capital letter for the title of a named individual and for legal office (e.g. the Attorney-General, the Chief Health Officer, Dr Smith, Professor Berry).
Measurement units, symbols and abbreviations
Use the International System of Units
) unless there is a particular problem associated with its adoption. If SI units are not used, indicate the relationship between the units given and the official units.
Use as few abbreviations as possible.
Abbreviations of capital letters never take full stops (e.g. WHO, ABC, UNAIDS).
Avoid footnotes in the body of the paper. Instead, put the material at the end of the paragraph or in brackets, or cut it altogether.
Footnotes in tables should use lower case superscript letters. To draw attention to p values in tables, use the sequence: *, **, ***.
Use language that does not depersonalise the subject. For example:
- do not refer to people as ‘cases'
- use ‘men and women’ not ‘males and females’, unless referring to animals or children as well as adults
- use ‘elderly people’ and ‘young people’ not ‘the elderly’, or ‘the young'
- people described in a category should first be referred to as people, before the category being discussed is identified (e.g. 'people with a disability' not 'disabled people', 'people with diabetes' not 'diabetics',
'people with HIV infection' not 'people infected with HIV' or 'HIV sufferers', 'people with HCV infection' not 'people infected with hepatitis C'.
For NSW Ministry of Health, use the terms as follows:
- NSW Health = Generic term for NSW Ministry of Health, local health districts, public health units, NSW Ambulance service, The Children's Hospital at Westmead and others
- NSW Ministry of Health = Specifically refers to head office in North Sydney
Figures and tables
Graphs from Excel or statistical analysis programs should not be embedded in the Word document but presented at the end of the manuscript following the references; include the data file in a separate file as well as the graph itself. Indicate in the text where each figure and table should appear.
Other illustrations should be high-resolution files; pictures cut and paste from the internet are not acceptable.
Figures should be simple. Every line should have a purpose and should be relevant to the message of the figure.
Figures should be complete in themselves, without reference to the accompanying text.
- acknowledge data sources below the figure
- provide a descriptive figure title and a legend
- label both axes of graphs horizontally (do not use vertical text)
- do not use three-dimensional boxes or shading
- use patterns rather than colour/shading to distinguish between columns
- do not use grid lines across graphs
- do not place figures in boxes
- use footnotes to explain acronyms (lower case superscript letters: a,b,c)
Figures should be provided after the references. The text of the manuscript should be clearly marked to indicate where the table is to be inserted (e.g. [Insert Figure 1]). Figures should be numbered consecutively and referred to in the text; however, information presented in the figure should not be repeated in the text.
Tables should be simple without any distracting elements such as lines and shading. Use lines at the top and bottom and below the heading row only. Do not use vertical lines or boxes.
The table should have a title which clearly describes what the table is about. Each row and column should have a heading. Abbreviations should be explained in a footnote. The source data used to generate the content of any tables should be referenced at the end of the table (e.g. Source: New South Wales Adult Health Survey 2002).
Tables should be complete in themselves, without reference to the accompanying text.
Tables should be provided after the references. Tables should be numbered consecutively and referred to in the text; however, information presented in the table should not be repeated in the text.
Boxes are useful for separating different types of information and are usually independent of the rest of the text. Boxes can be used for highlighting examples. As for tables and figures, the text should be clearly marked to indicate where the box should be inserted.
Acknowledgments should appear immediately before the reference list. The names, initials and, where necessary, official positions of those mentioned should be included. Do not mention everyone who has been marginally involved in the work.
Sources of funding should be declared.
As the Bulletin is a NSW Health publication, expressions of appreciation to political figures should not appear.
Citation and references
Authors are responsible for checking the authenticity and accuracy of references. Special care should be taken to see that every reference in the text is included in the list of references and vice versa, and that there is consistency in the spelling of authors’ names and the citation of dates throughout the paper.
References should be in Vancouver style. Each citation should be marked in the text with a superscript number. The reference list should be presented in numerical order at the end of the manuscript.
Avoid citing abstracts or a personal communication unless it provides essential information not available from a public source. In this case, the name of the person and date of communication should be cited in parentheses in the text. Personal communications should not appear in the reference list. Authors should obtain written permission and confirmation of accuracy from the source of a personal communication.
As websites are subject to change without notice, whenever URLs are cited the access date should be given (e.g. Cited 12 August 2002).
For print publications downloaded from the internet, give the full print citation (author, title, publication, year, volume, pages), and then add ‘Available from’ and the URL:
Abood S. Quality improvement initiative in nursing homes: the ANA acts in an advisory role. Am J Nurs 2002 (Cited 12 August 2002); 102(6) (about 3 p.0). Available at: http://www.nursingworld.org/default.aspx
The Bulletin is indexed by Medline and uses peer review to maintain standards and ensure relevance. Not all material submitted to the Bulletin is accepted. Papers must provide new information and be scientifically valid. Authors of highly clinical papers are referred to other journals.
The peer-review process is managed by the editorial team. For each proffered and commissioned paper, two peers in the subject area are invited to review the paper. Some papers require an additional review. Most papers require some revision by the authors, and depending upon the level of revision may be reviewed again upon resubmission.
Each reviewer is provided with a link to the Reviewer Report Form and Guidelines for Reviewers. Reviewers regularly request feedback on their reviews; in this case, the editorial team sends reviewers a copy of the other reviews of the paper they reviewed. This process is anonymous and no reviewers are identified.
If submitted manuscripts are judged useful for the readership, authors are given anonymous peer reviewer comments to help in the revision of their papers.
The time between submission of a manuscript and a decision by the editor regarding publication depends on the nature of the manuscript and the availability of suitable reviewers.