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Print version ISSN 0042-9686
Bull World Health Organ vol.81 n.12 Genebra Dec. 2003
First association of medical editors for Eastern Mediterranean Region
The first ever association of medical editors for WHO's Eastern Mediterranean Region was established during the region's first conference on medical journals in Cairo, Egypt in early October.
The launch of the Eastern Mediterranean Association of Medical Editors (EMAME) follows the foundation of a similar initiative, the Forum for African Medical Editors (FAME), in Nairobi in October last year.
The Eastern Mediterranean association's constitution and practice guidelines are currently under development but it is hoped that the initiative will promote and strengthen medical journals and support authors in the region.
Among the concerns to be addressed by the association is the under-representation of regional medical journals in the international literature and the disproportionate use by health care professionals of medical information from other sources such as pharmaceutical companies and international journals despite the availability of over 400 medical journals published in the region.
Dr Hooman Momen, Editor of the Bulletin, hoped that the association would also promote critical thinking among the region's authors. "Not only will this indirectly improve the quality of medical research in the region but it will also mean better representation for the region's authors in international medical journals," he said.
The conference was attended by 80 participants from 19 countries and was organized by WHO's Regional Office of the Eastern Mediterranean (EMRO) in collaboration with the Saudi Medical Journal. Topics under discussion included the status and trends in medical journal publishing in the region, problems and constraints faced by medical editors, quality and ethical issues and the promotion of networking and information dissemination.
Key recommendations included regular training for editors of regional biomedical journals, improved communication between editors and greater efforts by editors to fulfil the criteria necessary for the inclusion of their journals in international indexing services.
The coordination committee founded for the establishment of EMAME is currently gathering information and inviting editors of all biomedical journals in the region to participate in the association.