ICON’s Michael Pellegrino outlines research looking at patient involvement in journal review processes
It shouldn’t need to be said, but patients/consumers can make a valuable contribution to medical research and research outputs. This has been increasingly recognised by peak funding bodies and professional associations. This Pharma piece reflects on the role of patients in the review of papers. No-one is better placed for insights into benefits and risks that such participation can bring. From personal experience, it is key that such participants are adequately supported and recognised for their expertise.
Initiatives such as the FDA’s Patient-Focused Drug Development (PFDD) series were underway and pharma companies were beginning to issue patient engagement statements and protocols. In the field of medical publications, the British Medical Journal had put out a call for medical journal editors to actively engage patients in their journal review processes. This was a novel if not daring proposition. We wanted to explore if and how these calls for increased patient involvement had penetrated the field, specifically, journal review processes. We reported at the 2019 meeting of the International Society of Medical Publication Professionals (ISMPP) that most editors across diverse therapy areas did not include patients in peer-reviewed journals’ review processes.