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Review process

This journal uses a single-anonymised model of peer review. The author does not know the identity of the reviewers, but the reviewers know the identity of the author. 

All submissions will be initially assessed for suitability by the Editor-in-Chief before being passed to one of our Handling Editors. The Handling Editor arranges for articles to be single-blind peer reviewed by two independent, anonymous referees with expertise in the topic. On occasion, the Handling Editor may act as the second reviewer if a second reviewer is unavailable. The Editor-in-Chief will review all 'recommended to be accepted' papers in view of the referee comments and revisions and retains the right to request further revisions or decline the paper in exceptional circumstances. Find out more about what to expect during peer review here.

Revised submissions may be subject to the same review process as original submissions. The editors reserve the right to approach additional reviewers as needed. Decisions on revised submissions may also be based entirely on the assessments of the Editor-in-Chief and/or Handling Editor.'

Recommended reviewers are treated as suggestions only and there is no guarantee they will be approached.

Authors with grave concerns about potential reviewers should write to the journal to explain why they would like reviewers to be excluded. The journal editors reserve the right to invite excluded reviewers at their discretion.

The author and reviewer should not have any contact without the permission of the journal during the peer review process and before a final decision has been made. The system is set up to blind the reviewer name to the author. If the reviewer includes their name in the review it may be visible to the author.

A fundamental principle of the peer-review process is to assist authors in producing well-written articles for worldwide dissemination. Whenever necessary, an expert panel of assessors will help authors improve their papers to maximise their impact when published and, if necessary, will edit the presentation in terms of the English language.

The Editor-in-Chief selects some accepted papers for online-only issue publication (no print), based on suitability and timeliness; the proportion published online is currently about 30%. At the acceptance stage, we will inform authors if their paper has been selected for e-only issue publication. Articles published in BJPsych-International are referenced in PubMed whether they appear in the published journal in paper form, or online only. Selection for online-only issue publication is often made because the article has immediate and important relevance for clinical practice.

Videos and podcasts are reviewed by the digital content editors and the Editor-in-Chief. Prior to publication, all e-letters are screened by the Editor-in-Chief, who also oversees Pandora’s Box. Some issue editorials, such as the Editor-in-Chief’s editorials introducing the issue, are not peer reviewed.

No person is permitted to take any role in the peer-review of a paper in which they have an interest, defined as follows: fees or grants from, employment by, consultancy for, shared ownership in, or any close relationship with, an organisation whose interests, financial or otherwise, may be affected by the publication of the paper. Unless so stated, material in this journal does not necessarily reflect the views of the Editor or the Royal College of Psychiatrists. The publishers are not responsible for any error of omission or fact.

When editorial board members of this journal submit papers, the journal follows the below process:

  1. Editorial board members include a declaration of interest statement in their submission stating their role with the journal.
  2. Editorial board members submit to the journal via ScholarOne and do not take part in the review or decision-making process regarding their own paper.
  3. Editorial board members who have submitted papers to the journal are blinded from accessing information on their paper in the system and are notified of decisions in the usual way.

Appeals & Complaints

If an author believes their manuscript has been incorrectly rejected, an appeal letter can be submitted by responding to the decision email directly or contacting

To have an appeal considered, please provide full details regarding your reasoning for the appeal letter. All appeals are reviewed and discussed by the Editorial Board with a final decision communicated to the author via email. We can consider only one appeal per manuscript.

Please direct all complaints to the Editor-in-Chief or the editorial office at