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The Romanian Journal of Anaesthesia and Intensive Care (Jurnalul Român de Anestezie şi Terapie Intensivă – JRATI) is the official Journal of the Romanian Society of Anaesthesia and Intensive Care (SRATI). The first issue appeared in 1994, thanks to a group of enthusiastic and committed anaesthesiologists who for several decades before had been controlled and silenced by the political authorities.
In the free-speech publishing environment that started after the 1989 revolution, many medical journals appeared, but not all survived. The Romanian Journal of Anaesthesia and Intensive Care is one of the survivors, and this year we celebrate its 20th year of uninterrupted publication.
When the Journal was launched, many doubted that there would be enough scientific material of value for the Journal, as the high quality manuscripts were submitted to more established journals. Our confidence in the professional and research skills of the Romanian anaesthesiologists proved to be right, and the Journal continued to be published regularly twice a year.
At the beginning, the full articles were published in the Romanian language, while the abstracts were published in both Romanian and English. At the same time, we translated and then published guidelines and other educational material acquired with the permission of the European Society of Anaesthesiology. As the number of on-line “open-source” (“pay-to-publish”) journals driven, in part, by publication fees expanded, it became increasingly difficult to attract a steady stream of submissions of high quality papers, and it became clear that a journal published in a language spoken in only one or two countries would have difficulty reaching an international audience. English has become the standard language in the medical field, and starting in 2002, we encouraged the Romanian authors to submit manuscripts written in English. Gradually, the number of articles in English increased, and that facilitated the inclusion of international experts to review our original manuscripts. The peer review enhanced the quality of the publications, stimulated more original research, and eventually lead to the indexing of the Journal in the Elsevier Bibliographic Database (EMBASE and SCOPUS) in 2009. The editorial board was expanded by inviting international personalities to participate and to contribute reviews and editorials.
As a service to our authors and readers, a home page (www.jurnalul-anestezie.ro) was established in 2007. There, the title and abstracts of all articles and the full text of articles in English became freely accessible online, accompanied by our guidelines for authors.
Determined to adhere to international standards of publication standards and ethics, the Journal’s Guidelines for Authors started recommending disclosure of information about the authors’ conflicts of interest, approval of studies by the Institutional Ethics Committee, and patients’ informed consent. The authors were also asked to provide a cover letter attesting to the ethical conduct of research for publication.
In the authors’ guidelines of this issue of the Journal, the authors will be informed about the requirement that manuscripts be checked for plagiarism prior to submission.
Starting this year, in order to reach an international audience and be accepted by indexing bibliographic databases, we decided to start publishing all accepted manuscripts in English. As many Romanian anaesthesiologists may still have difficulties writing scientific manuscripts in proper English, we obtained invaluable support from a native English-speaker editor, Mrs. Sally Wood-Lamont, who agreed to assist us with style and grammar corrections.
We think that a Romanian scientific journal published entirely in English is fully justified. It will facilitate the dissemination of the important contributions of the Romanian anaesthesiologists to the international scientific community, while expanding the journal’s reach by providing a larger audience. We look forward to seeing the continued evolution of the journal, and expectantly ask for our readers’ and contributors’ feedback.