INFORMATION FOR CONTRIBUTORS
The African Journal of Health Sciences (AJHS) provides a forum for communication of research outputs and policy issues in the health sciences and related disciplines. The Journal is dedicated to serving primarily scientists in Africa and those outside the continent wishing to contribute to global health on a variety of subjects including medicine, geo-medicine, dentistry, nursing, public health, nutrition, biostatistics, pharmacology, toxicology, pharmaceutical science, social science etc. The Editorial Board will give priority to articles that make significant contributions to the development and promotion of health in Africa. We publish original research papers, reviews, short communications, commentaries, case studies, surveys etc.
Frequency of Publication: We publish Bi-monthly (every two months).
When the AJHS receives manuscripts submitted for publication consideration, they are first screened by members of the scientific editorial team. Manuscripts are sent to peer reviewers if they meet our minimum standard. Each manuscript is assigned two scientific peer reviewers. A verdict for publication is made by the Editors considering the recommendations of reviewers. A verdict for publication or rejection is made based on the scientific soundness of the paper.
Issue Content Format
Each Issue will contain essentially the following sections, with variants where necessary:
A short editorial statement on policy issues, of not more than two thousand words, placed not necessarily on the first page.
A short review of not more than 5000 words titled ‘Perspective’ on a current topic in the health sciences.
One or two review articles by invitation or on application
Peer-reviewed articles by invitation or an application.
Letters to the Editor
News about and on African Health and related matters.
AJHS accepts submissions written in British English. The papers should have a maximum of 5000 words, including references. Because we appreciate clear and concise writing that highlights key concepts about the work. We encourage authors to structure the content using approaches such as headings, subheadings, tables and figures. Do number the pages but do not include line numbers.
Tables and figures
All tables and figures should be presented in APA style, numbered and given appropriate titles that briefly describe the information they carry. We encourage the authors to use no more than 5 tables and 8 figures in an article. These should be placed in the body of the manuscript (and not on a separate file). Any supplementary materials submitted that the authors wish to publish should be inserted in the manuscript as appendices after the references. Title pages should also not be submitted separately but rather presented in the upper section of the first page of the article. They should include the title, authors’ names and institutional affiliation.
Formatting of Research Papers
Research papers should be organized in this order:
Title: Should be short (a maximum of 25 words) and specific.
Byline: Full names of all authors, their qualifications, institutional affiliations and full address of each author. Qualification of authors is only required for purposes of the Editors' reference and not for publication.
Name and email address of corresponding author(s).
Source of financial support, if any.
Summary: Should be structured (background/introduction, materials and methods, results, conclusions and recommendations) with between 250 – 300 words.
Background/ Introduction: Concise and clear, justifying the study rationale and stating the aim of the study.
Materials and methods: Briefly outline important aspects of your methodology such as the study design, the sample size (with adequate justification), the sampling technique, methods and instruments of data collection, techniques to minimize bias/errors, ethical considerations (quote Ethical approval number for human studies) and data analysis. Laboratory procedures can be summarized and referenced if descriptions of the procedures are very lengthy.
Results: Logically presented with appropriate displays.
Discussion: Key findings of the study, giving comparisons with other literature (with proper citations).
Limitations/ Strengths of the study
Conclusions: Derived from the findings of the study.
Conflict of interest statement
Availability of data statement
Author Email contacts
References: Arranged according to the Vancouver style. In-text citations should be numbered and placed in the text in parenthesis (2) or as superscripts without brackets 2.
Formatting of Short Communications
They should possess all the elements of scientific communication as research papers, but without abstracts, subheadings and with not more than 500 words and 5 references
AJHS follows the Vancouver referencing style. We encourage authors to consider using reference management software, such as Zotero (free), Mendeley (free), EndNote, or RefWorks, which include built-in styles. This software is automated making it easier for authors to format citations and their reference lists as they revise. References should be numbered consecutively in the order in which they are first mentioned in the text. Include a list of all references cited at the end of the article, in the order in which they were mentioned in the text.
Citation of Periodicals:
Watkins WM, Howells RE, Brandling-Bennet AD and Koech DK. In vitro susceptibility of Plasmodium falciparum isolates from Jilore, Kenya to antimalarial drugs. American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. 1987; 37: 445-451.
Citation of Books
OleFijerskov, Firoze Manji and Vibeke Baellum, eds. Dental flouroris; Handbook for health workers. Copenhagen; Munksgaard, 1988 p.
Citation of Chapters in Books
Same as B above.
The use of footnotes is generally discouraged. Any such statements should be incorporated into the body of the paper.
All submissions to the AJHS are sent online through our contact email address: firstname.lastname@example.org. Submitted articles should be a proofread final draft and submitted as a Microsoft Word attachment (DOC, DOCX). Submissions should include the following:
A soft copy of the manuscript/ article
A letter of submission
Written permission from authors whose copyright material/ illustrations/photographs/figures have been used in the manuscript.
Informed consent from participants whose photographs have been used.
A signed ownership declaration statement.
Peer Review process
The AJHS operates a single-blind peer review system where the reviewers’ identity is concealed from the authors. Original research and reviews will first undergo peer review before publication. Each manuscript will be assigned two peer reviewers. The process takes 4-6 weeks of review and revision until the Editors are satisfied with the state of the paper. Peer reviewers are drawn from our pool of scientific peer reviewers although Authors may be asked to propose potential reviewers for their papers. If we make such a request, kindly propose reviewers with no conflict of interest.
Peer reviewers are selected considering their area of speciality and a review guideline provided. During the peer review process, the AJHS sets a time limit of 21 working days within which reviewers need to review manuscripts and submit their comments to the journal. The authors are then allotted 14 working days to send back their responses to the reviewers' comments. If the authors or reviewers need more time, this turnaround time can be extended. Reviewers have the option to either recommend:
‘Publish as is’
'Publish with minor revisions
‘Publish with major revision
‘Suitable for publication in another journal
'Not suitable for publication in this journal
If the decision is for revision, authors are requested to respond to comments raised by reviewers. When the Editors confirm that the authors have satisfactorily responded to all comments raised by peer-reviewers a verdict is made and reviewers are informed of the status of the manuscripts they have reviewed.
Use of Copyrighted Material
When authors use photographs in their manuscripts, they will be responsible for ensuring that the images presented are at high enough resolution to produce good-quality reproduction in the published article. If the photographs presented have identifiable images of people or reproducing illustrations/figures from sources whose copyright ownership is not owned by the authors, you must also submit written evidence of permission to use the said material the paper goes to publication.
Conflict of Interest
All authors' manuscripts submitted must include a statement on conflict of interest. Where there are no competing interests, please indicate, “None declared.”
The AJHS applies the Creative Commons Attribution License to all articles that we publish. Therefore, under this license, authors will retain ownership of the copyright for their articles or they can transfer copyright to their institution, but authors allow anyone to copy, distribute, transmit, and/or adapt articles without permission, so long as the original authors and source are cited.
We strictly discourage plagiarism. The authors are responsible for ensuring that all original works have been duly cited. Evidence of plagiarism will lead to the rejection of submissions. If evidence of plagiarism is discovered after publication, then the paper will be retracted from our publications. All authors will sign an ‘ownership declaration form’ for all manuscripts submitted to the AJHS.
AJHS charges an article processing fee of Kenya shillings of 4000 to Kenyan authors and USD 100 to non-Kenyan authors. The fee is paid once during submission. However, fees will only be paid if the manuscript passes the initial screening and has been included for consideration in the AJHS. Fee payment details will be provided at this stage.
Authors listed in the byline should all conform to ICMJE guidelines on authorship. All contributors who do not meet the criteria for authorship should be mentioned in the acknowledgement section. Contributions/support by authors in the byline should be briefly described. The corresponding author’s name and email contact should be provided. The journal will communicate to the authors through the corresponding author.
Source of funding
Please declare the source of funding.
Contact the Journal
African Journal of Health Sciences,
Kenya Medical Research Institute Headquarters,
Off Mbagathi Road, Nairobi, Kenya.
P.O. Box 54840-00200, Nairobi, Kenya.
Tel: +254 0202722541/4
We are listed on AJOL (Display AJOL logo)
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is your turnaround time?
The turnaround time from acceptance to publication is 2-4 months, depending on the number of accepted papers awaiting publication.
Is your Journal peer-reviewed?
Yes, the AJHS is peer-reviewed. The peer review process is described in the information to contributors.
When do I pay the Article Processing Fee?
The APC is paid during submission, but after the paper has passed the first screening. Authors will be notified by email when their papers successfully go through the preliminary screening.
Where can I get the banking details for the fee payment?
The AJHS secretariat will send the banking details to the authors by email.
Is publication guaranteed once I pay the article processing fee?
Verdicts for publication/ rejection will be made solely based on the scientific soundness of the submitted manuscript.
Is there a prescribed format for manuscripts?
Yes. The prescribed format for research papers is provided in the information to contributors. Authors are encouraged to follow the guidelines as closely as possible to ensure a faster turnaround time.