Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Helping authors comply with the NIH policy

On June 10, Kevin Smith blogged a sample letter, from a librarian to a publishing faculty member, on how to comply with the NIH policy.
Congratulations on the paper! The first step in complying with the NIH public access policy is to be sure you retained the right to deposit the article when you signed a publication agreement. ...

[Y]our next step is to actually deposit the article in PubMed Central. You do this using the NIHMS system; there are instructions and links here. We are being told by those who have used it that the submission process is fairly easy and straightforward. Nevertheless, if you have any difficulties, just let me know and I or one of the librarians will be glad to come to your office and help you with it.

Once you have submitted the article, along with any supplemental material, all you have to do is wait. NIH will send you, or the principle [sic] investigator named on the appropriate grant if that is someone other than you, a final copy of the article as it will appear in PubMed Central for verification. It is important to review the article at that time to be sure everything is correct, just as you would do with the page proofs for the journal, and respond to that e-mail.

At some point in the process you will be asked to verify that you have the right to authorize PMC availability and to tell PMC about any embargo. ...

For future reference in any paperwork submitted to the NIH, you will need to obtain the PMC ID number for your article. This helps NIH track compliance with the policy and is now required on renewal applications, progress reports and the like. Again, library staff can help you find this number if you have any difficulty.