Login or Register to make a submission.

Submission Preparation Checklist

As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.
  • The submission has not been previously published, nor is it under consideration by another journal (or an explanation has been provided in Comments to the Editor).
  • The submission document is the format of OpenOffice, Microsoft Word, PDF, RTF or WordPerfect.
  • Where available, provide a website link to all references for PubMed, Full Text, DOI.
  • The manuscript text is formatted with single spacing and Times New Roman font at 12-point size in regular style, except for URL addresses, which are underlined. All illustrations, figures, and tables should be placed at the end.
  • The text adheres to the stylistic and bibliographic requirements outlined in the Author Guidelines.
  • All Authors must sign the authorship letter in sequence, and corresponding author should mention the contribution of each author to the work.

Author Guidelines

Bhutan Health Journal abide by:
1. International Committee of Medical Journal Editors for Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts submitted to Biomedical Journals
2. World Association of Medical Editors for best editorial practice
3. Council of Science Editors for best editorial practice
4. Committee on Publication Ethics for practicing good publication ethics

You can view Author Guideline (Printed version) from HERE [You need to have Acrobat Reader installed on your computer]

The Editorial Process 
BHJ follows the principles of COPE, CSE, WAME and ICMJE guidelines. The submitted manuscripts are duly acknowledged and initially reviewed for possible publication by the Editors with the understanding that they are being submitted only to the BHJ, have not been published, simultaneously submitted or accepted for publication elsewhere.

Rejection: More than 95% of the submitted manuscript is rejected by the preliminary in-house review process, mostly due to lack of BHJ format, to avoid preliminary rejection, please go through submission guideline in detail, follow them strictly and prepare your manuscript accordingly.

On average, 40-60% of the manuscripts with insufficient originality or insignificant message, serious scientific and technical flaws are rejected after peer review. However, we do encourage the author to resubmit after the revision if the research was conducted scientifically. The preliminary rejection of the manuscript is related to; manuscript being out of scope, manuscript not formatted correctly, not following checklist and guidelines accurately, submission below publishable standards, incomplete submission (e.g. lack of ethical approval letter for research article). The rejection could also be due to lack of originality, flaws in the METHODS section, generalizing and exaggerating the finding not supported by internal and external validity, peer reviewers' comment not adequately answered or unanswered, plagiarism, publication misconduct and more. While declining the submission, we do not make comment on each aspect of the manuscript but give the reason for inadequate BHJ formatting, which means one or all of the above reasons. If you follow the BHJ guideline in detail, you will find out the reason for the rejection. If you fail to pinpoint, we request you to consult a modern epidemiologist, methodologist, or medical statistician. Therefore, we request you to go through the author guideline in detail to avoid rejection of your submission.

We truly value your hard work and wish to publish most of the submissions to the BHJ. However, as we stated earlier, we follow the principles of COPE, CSE, WAME and ICMJE guidelines. Hence, we have to maintain the highest standard of scientific values in our work. Therefore, we urge you to help us to improve science together. We hope that the rejection of your current submission will not deter you to continue submitting your work to the BHJ.

Publication and Decision Time: Time to first decision overall (average) within 3 -5 days for initial decision (without review); 30-45 days (with the review). Those articles which have been submitted six months to a year ago undergo auto-pruning (automatic declining). It happens due to one of the following reasons i) to iii) or due to loss of contact with the authors.

If you find encounter delay and find no update on your BHJ submission account, which could be due to;
i) submission was incomplete or 
ii) submission was without following BHJ format and supplementary documents or 
iii) there is an issue with your submission (e.g. ethical issues or research misconduct or related)
Because of any of the above issues or any other reasons, if you do not receive any information or update about your submission within 2-4 weeks, please contact BHJ as soon as possible. We will make sure that your voice is heard and addressed appropriately.

N.B. Please do not contact on personal email, social media or phone number to Editor-in-Chief, Editorial team or BHJ staff related to your submission. All communication must be made via BHJ official email address only. BHJ best editorial practice ensures that it publishes the highest standard articles. 

Required Guidelines and Checklist

BHJ requires the use of an appropriate reporting guideline when writing any health research manuscript.

You must submit a completed checklist for the relevant guideline (and flow diagram if applicable) alongside your manuscript, indicating the manuscript page on which each checklist item is found. Editable checklists for reporting guidelines can be found here or on the EQUATOR Network site, which also gives general information on how to choose the correct guideline and why guidelines are important. Using a checklist helps to ensure you have used a guideline correctly.

At the minimum, your article must report the content addressed by each item of the identified checklist or state that the item was not considered in the study and, if relevant, the reason why not (for example, if you did not use blinding, your article should explain this). Meeting these basic reporting requirements will greatly improve the value of your manuscript, may facilitate/enhance the peer review process, and may enhance its chances for eventual publication.

Checklists are not simply an administrative hurdle. We ask you to complete a checklist because this helps you to check that you have included all of the important information in your article and because it helps our editors and reviewer to complete the same check. If the checklist indicates an item that you have not addressed in your manuscript, please either explain in the manuscript text why this information is not relevant to your study or add the relevant information.

Authors must check the EQUATOR NetworkCONSORT and STROBE sites for any reporting guidelines that apply to your study design and ensure they include any required supporting information recommended by the relevant guidelines. Documentation (checklist) for specific studies should be uploaded as supporting information during manuscript submission. 

Guidelines for Specific Study Types
Some common study types and the appropriate guidelines are listed below. If you cannot find an appropriate guideline here, search the full EQUATOR database and talk to our editor.

You may need to use more than one guideline, depending on your research. For example, if you randomly assigned human participants to one of two interventions, then conducted unstructured interviews with each participant, you will need to use CONSORTCOREQ, and TIDIER together. To make sure you collect all of the relevant guidelines, check each major heading, even if you have already found a relevant guideline under a previous major heading.

If you are reporting a protocol
- Use the SPIRIT guideline for the protocol of a clinical trial
- Use the PRISMA-P guideline for the protocol of a systematic review

If you are reporting a review of a section of the existing literature
- Use the ENTREQ guideline for a review of studies that use descriptive data, such as unstructured interviews (qualitative data)
- Use the MOOSE guideline for a review of observational studies
- Use the PRISMA guideline for any other kind of systematic review or meta-analysis

If you are reporting on animal research
Use the ARRIVE guideline for research on animals in a lab
- Use the REFLECT guideline for research on livestock

If you are reporting descriptive data (either alone or alongside quantitative data)
- Use the COREQ guideline for reporting unstructured interviews and focus groups
- Use the CARE guideline for reporting one case study or a series of case studies, (SCARE for surgical case report)
- Use the SRQR guideline for any other descriptive data (qualitative research)

If you are reporting research into diagnosis
- Use the STARD guideline if you compared the accuracy of a diagnostic test with an established reference standard test
- Use the REMARK guideline if you evaluated the prognostic value of a biomarker
-Use the TRIPOD guideline if you developed, validated, or updated a prognostic or diagnostic prediction modelling tool.

If you are reporting research into an intervention or treatment on people
- Use the TIDIER guideline to fully describe your intervention
- Use the CHEERS guideline for an economic evaluation of the interventions

If you are reporting research into an intervention, treatment, exposure, or protective factor on people
- Use the CARE guideline for reporting one case study or a series of case studies, (SCARE for surgical case report)
- Use the CONSORT guideline or one of its extensions:
         If you selected your participants before they received the intervention/exposure/etc. under study, AND
         You controlled which intervention/exposure/etc. they each received, AND
         You used a random allocation method to decide which intervention/exposure/etc. they each received.   ie: a randomised controlled trial

Use the STROBE guideline or one of its extensions:
- If you selected your participants after they received the intervention/exposure/etc. under study, OR
- You selected your participants before they received the intervention/exposure/etc. under study AND you did not control which intervention/exposure/etc. they received (they decided/their doctor decided/life just happened)
  ie: an observational study (cross-sectionalcase-controlcohort)

Use the TREND guideline:
- If you selected your participants before they received the intervention/exposure/etc. under study, AND
- If CARE , CONSORT, and STROBE are not applicable to your research AND
- You used a non-random way to decide which intervention/exposure/etc. your participants received, such as which hospital they went to or what their clinical symptoms were.
  ie: a non-randomised trial

Clinical Trials
BHJ follows the World Health Organization’s (WHO) definition of a clinical trial:
"a clinical trial is any research study that prospectively assigns human participants or groups of humans to one or more health-related interventions to evaluate the effects on health outcomes. Clinical trials may also be referred to as interventional trials. Interventions include but are not restricted to drugs, cells and other biological products, surgical procedures, radiologic procedures, devices, behavioural treatments, process-of-care changes, preventive care, etc."

Registering Clinical Trials
All clinical trials submitted to BHJ must be entered in a publicly accessible registry approved by the WHO or ICMJE. See the list of approved registries.
BHJ consider prospective trial registration (that is, registration before participant enrollment has begun) to be best publication practice, as recommended by the ICMJE. Clinical trials that began to enrol participants before ICMJE recommendations took effect on July 1, 2005 may be retrospectively registered, if trial registry accepts.

Focus and Scope 
BHJ invites original research papers, review articles, case reports, medical education, viewpoints letter to the editor containing new insight into any aspect of Medical & Health Science that are not published or not being considered for publication elsewhere. The journal is particularly interested and welcomes papers in basic and clinical medical sciences, medical education, public health, hospital and healthcare management, research and publication ethics, too.

Submission Documents 
Please submit all the following documents while submitting your new manuscript to BHJ:
1. Forwarding letter
2. Authorship
3. Declaration
4. Manuscript
5. Ethical Approval letter*
*This is for research articles and case reports (by foreign authors on Bhutanese patients) only. Ethical approval letter should be taken before starting the research. Any research without ethical approval by a recognized ethical review board will not be accepted for publication. The Research Ethics Board of Health is the apex body for looking after the ethics in research in Bhutan and Institutional Review Board (IRB) has been established at Khesar Gyalpo Univeristy of Medical Sciences of Bhutan (KGUMSB) since 2021. Therefore, depending on which areas a researcher belongs to, the ethical clearance needs to be sought.

For international author - please provide ethical approval letter from your institutional ethical committee or national body responsible for ethics in research. 
Any submission without the above documents and manuscript not in BHJ format will be rejected outright. Therefore to avoid such errors and rejection, please submit your article with all supplementary and required files along with the use of appropriate template given below.

The majority of the submitted manuscript lack proper formatting, on the top of that heading and subheading, is not correctly written. Therefore, we encourage you to use the appropriate template for your manuscript.

  1. Original Article Template
  2. Case Report Template
  3. Review Article Template
  4. Viewpoint Template
  5. Medical Education Template
  6. Letter to the Editor Template

Added Documents
Please go through  BHJ checklist, template and supplementary files during the preparation of your manuscript. We use Vancouver style for references, please use the guidance available at CITING MEDICINE for citing materials accurately. Use of incorrect, inappropriate citation and erroneous bibliographic listing may possibly invalidate your manuscript at BHJ.

  1. BHJ Checklist (must read)
  2. Full Text Directives (Click Here to Download)

Must Have Information 
To minimize the rejection (or return for revision) of your article please do the followings: 

  1. All the documents have to be submitted at once in single submission (as listed above).
  2. Please use the appropriate template for your manuscript to avoid error in the heading and subheadings.
  3. Please address all the point described in the template, BHJ checklist, references and manuscript preparation guidelines etc.
  4. Please do not submit the article that we do not publish (check author guideline for a different type of article we accept).
  5. If you have difficulty working on the computer or not good at it particularly Microsoft word document, please seek a professional help to prepare your manuscript according to our need.
  6. Email is the preferred methods of communication, therefore, please check your email once a day after you submit an article to BHJ. We will inform you about the status of your article through our system to the email you at your mail ID which you have provided during REGISTRATION to BHJ. We may also contact you anytime for immediate information to speed up the review process. 
  7. Please do not contact editorial member's personal telephone numbers but BHJ office. If you have more queries, please contact us anytime. Help us to help you by providing the required information as described on this page.



  1. Original Article

    ssBHJ accept researches conducted in the field of basic and clinical medical sciences, medical education, public health, hospital and healthcare management, allied health sciences and research and publication ethics, with the maximum length of 2500-3500 words (excluding abstract of 250 words). It undergoes a rigorous peer review process. Please expect lots of communication from the BHJ. 
    Required Submission Documents: 

    1. Forwarding Letter,
    2. Authorship letter signed by all the authors,
    3. Declaration,
    4. Manuscript (in BHJ template using appropriate reporting guideline),
    5. A copy of the ethical approval letter,
    6. Checklist of reporting guideline

    Recommend 2 reviewers in the "Comment for the Editor" Section below.

  2. View Point

    The article in this section is based on issues related to health sciences to raise the voice, awareness, new ideas, thought to provoke concepts, and personal expert opinion to improve the health. The word limit is up to 1000-1500 words excluding the abstract of 100 words and references. It undergoes the peer review process. 
    Required Submission Documents:

    1. Forwarding Letter,
    2. Authorship,
    3. Declaration,
    4. Manuscript (in BHJ template using appropriate reporting guideline),

    Recommend 2 reviewers in the "Comment for the Editor" Section below.

  3. Case Report

    This section includes report of a case with literature review that includes, an unexpected association between diseases or symptoms, an unexpected event in the course of observing or treating a patient, findings that shed new light on the possible pathogenesis of a disease or an adverse effect, unique or rare feature of a disease, unique therapeutic approaches, approaches to a case report, a patient whose diagnosis was difficult to make, describe changes in one or more patients with chronic conditions over an extended time period, report on two or more patients with similar characteristics who received different interventions and had different outcomes, atypical management of patients with common problems, atypical patient presentations, apply theory to patient or client management, report on an administrative or academic experience. Please use the CARE Case Report Checklist while preparing your case report taking an account of CARE Flow Diagram.
    Case report provides an opportunity for the scientist to work further therefore, we are interested in advance medical science and spawn research; describe rare, perplexing, or novel diagnostic features of a disease state; report therapeutic challenges, controversies, or dilemmas; describe a new approach to treatment and patient care, teach humanistic lessons to the health care professional; review a unique job description of a health care professional that improves patient care; report new medical errors or medication errors; discover a device malfunction that results in patient harm; describe drug adverse effects and patient toxicity; life-threatening adverse events; dangerous and predictable adverse effects that are poorly appreciated and rarely recognized; a therapeutic failure or a lack of therapeutic efficacy; use of life-saving techniques not previously documented; uncover barriers to patient adherence; discover an interaction between a drug and a laboratory test that yields a false-positive or false-negative result; effect of drugs in pregnancy and lactation; use of technology to improve patient outcomes. The word limit is upto 1500-2000 words excluding title, unstructured abstract of 150 words and references). Number of references depends upon the type of case but we recommend limiting it to 5-10 references. It undergoes a peer review process. Please download the Case Report Consent Form, get a written consent and put the original on the patient chart and provide a copy of it during your submission. 

    Required Submission Documents:

    1. Forwarding Letter,
    2. Authorship,
    3. Declaration,
    4. Manuscript (in BHJ template using CARE or SCARE reporting guideline),
    5. A copy case report consent form,
    6. CARE Checklist.

    Recommend 2 reviewers in the "Comment for the Editor" Section below.

  4. Review Article

    Review article summarises the current state of understanding on a topic and analyses or discusses research previously published by others on the subject matter, rather than reporting new experimental results and which does not fit into the category of systematic review. They are thorough literature reviews that identify historical and current trends in the topic, gaps in the research (areas for further exploration), and current debates or controversies.  It has to be about 3000 words without counting abstract (200 words) and references (>50 and usually <100). It undergoes a rigorous peer review process. 
    Required Submission Documents:

    1. Forwarding Letter,
    2. Authorship,
    3. Declaration,
    4. Manuscript (in BHJ template using authors' guideline)

    Recommend 2 reviewers in the "Comment for the Editor" Section below.

  5. Letter To Editor

    Letter to the editor may be regarding any clarifications or explanations about the published article in the Journal or feedback or important commentaries within the word limit of 500-1000 words. We do not require abstract but references up to 5.

    Required Submission Documents:

    1. Forwarding Letter,
    2. Authorship,
    3. Declaration,
    4. Manuscript (in BHJ template using authors' guideline)
  6. Editorial

    It is written by BHJ editors or invited (Guest Editorial) on most pertinent issues on Health in Bhutan or in the world.  It undergoes a fast-track peer review process. These are usually solicited but unsolicited material may also be considered (approx. 1000 to 1200 words). A maximum of 10- 12 references may be included. Editorials should not have tables and figures. The editorial shall on be on topic/areas of national importance or recent updates in the field of Medicine and Health systems.

  7. Selected Summary

    Selected summaries are of important articles published elsewhere and they provide a short summary of the paper in the reviewer’s words (not the original authors’ published abstract) followed by comments (approx. 800- 1000 words). A copy of the original publication should accompany the submission.

  8. Short Report

    These are research article which doesn't fit exactly into research article but findings are interesting, e.g. pilot study. It undergoes the peer review process . A short report may include up to 1-2 tables or figures and 12 to 15 references.

  9. Medical Education

    BHJ accept perspective on undergraduate, postgraduate and continuing medical education. All issues of current interest, including teaching methods, curriculum reform, the training of medical teachers, the selection of entrants and assessment techniques, curriculum development, evaluations of performance, assessment of training needs and evidence-based medicine are accepted, with word limit up to 1500-2000 words excluding abstract of 150 words. It undergoes the peer review process.

    Required Submission Documents:

    1. Forwarding Letter,
    2. Authorship,
    3. Declaration,
    4. Manuscript (in BHJ template using authors' guideline)

    Recommend 2 reviewers in the "Comment for the Editor" Section below.

  10. Snippet

    It does not have standard format but it should be of public interest.

  11. Book Review

    This section is invited by the editorial board.
    Required Submission Documents:

    1. Forwarding Letter
    2. Authorship
    3. Declaration
    4. Manuscript (in BHJ template using authors' guideline)

  12. University and Health News

    This section includes information about Unviersity activities and health events nationally. The submission to this section is open to Bhutanese only.

Privacy Statement

The names and email addresses entered in this journal site will be used exclusively for the stated purposes of this journal and will not be made available for any other purpose or to any other party.