What is a General Medicine Journal?

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  • Written By: Karyn Maier
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 30 October 2018
  • Copyright Protected:
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By definition, general medicine encompasses family medicine that addresses preventative care and treatment of a variety of disorders in patients of all ages. In fact, the general physician is regarded as a primary health care provider that is familiar with many acute and chronic disorders, including asthma, diabetes, infections, heart disease, allergies, obesity, anxiety disorders and much more. So, a general medicine journal is just like other medical journals except that it is more focused on issues of concern to the general physician. However, a general medicine journal is also likely to include areas of specialty that fall under general medicine, such as general internal medicine.

Another contrast between a general medicine journal and other types of medical journals is that the latter are often associated with medical societies and organizations. For example, there is the Journal of the American Medical Association, the Canadian Medical Association Journal, and the British Medical Journal. These types of journals are also more likely to contain reviews, summaries, and commentaries relevant to their respective associations, in addition to medical abstracts.


Material submitted to a general medicine journal for publication is subject to the same editorial standards as other medical journals as governed by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE). First, there is a review process, which can vary in intensity between publications. However, the process nearly always begins with an initial editorial review by a single managing editor or an entire editorial committee. The review process generally considered most rigorous is the peer review, which means that the article is reviewed by one or more researchers specializing in the same field of medicine as the contributing author or authors.

There are other requirements that must be satisfied before material can be accepted and published by a general medicine journal, which again may vary between publications. Generally, proof of meeting these requirements is presented in some form of documentation. For instance, some journals expect to receive releases from study subjects participating in a clinical trial for publication, as well as sworn statements declaring the authors to be the originators of the work. Others require a detailed account of sponsorship or other funding sources for a study. In some cases, an ethics committee or a review board must approve the article or abstract before being considered for publication.

Just as the scope of medicine involved in general practice is so broad, so is the content typically published in a general medicine journal. The material may pertain to specialties of interest to a general practitioner, such as pediatrics, cardiology, or emergency medicine. In addition, specific topics can vary widely, from depression to arthritis and substance abuse.



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