Guide for Authors

All journal information and instructions compiled in one document (PDF) in just one mouse-click Author information pack

INTRODUCTION
• Types of article
BEFORE YOU BEGIN
• CONSIDERATIONS SPECIFIC TO TYPES OF RESEARCH DESIGNS
• Common reporting guidelines are listed below:
• Human and animal rights
• Conflict of interest
• Submission declaration
• Contributors
• Authorship
• Changes to authorship
• Clinical trial results
• Reporting clinical trials
• Registration of clinical trials
• Article transfer service
• Role of the funding source
• Funding body agreements and policies
• Open access
• Language (usage and editing services)
• Submission
• Referees
• Review process
PREPARATION
• Use of word processing software
• DOCUMENTATION REQUIRED AT SUBMISSION STAGE
• Article structure
• Essential title page information
• Abstract
• Keywords
• Abbreviations
• Acknowledgements
• Units
• Math formulae
• Footnotes
• Artwork
• Illustration services
• Tables
• References
• AudioSlides
• Supplementary material
• Submission checklist
AFTER ACCEPTANCE
• Use of the Digital Object Identifier
• Online proof correction
• Offprints
AUTHOR INQUIRIES



Australian Critical Care is the official journal of The Australian College of Critical Care Nurses and publishes peer-reviewed scholarly papers that report research findings, research-based reviews, discussion papers and commentaries which are of interest to an international readership of critical care practitioners, educators, administrators and researchers.

Papers should address issues of interest to critical care nurses and present the paper in the context of the existing international research base on the topic. Selection of papers for publication is based on their scientific excellence, distinctive contribution to knowledge (including methodological development) and their importance to contemporary critical care practice.

The journal does not accept manuscripts containing animal experimentation.

Types of article

Australian Critical Care publishes original research, reviews, case studies and discussion papers. In addition we publish editorials and commentaries on existing content with the journal. Where a case is made we will also publish protocols of studies.

Word limits - Our experience suggests that all things being equal, readers find shorter papers more useful than longer ones. Given this, and competition for space in the Journal, papers of between 2,000 and 3,500 words are preferred. Word limits are exclusive of figures, table and references. Ordinarily there should be no appendices although in the case of papers reporting tool development or the use of novel questionnaires it is usual to include a copy of the tool as an appendix.

Exceptions - Authors of any manuscripts that do not comply with these restrictions should make preliminary enquiry to the Editor-in-Chief before submitting the manuscript.

Editorials - 1,000–1,500 words
Authors who have ideas for editorials which address issues of substantive concern to the discipline, particularly those of a controversial nature or linked directly to forthcoming content in the journal, should contact the Editor in Chief (editor.acc@acccn.com.au).

Research Papers - 2,000-3,500 words
Full papers reporting original research can be a maximum of 3,500 words in length, although shorter papers are preferred. Research papers should adhere to recognised standards for reporting (see above guidance and Author Checklist).

All research papers reporting the development of scales must include a copy of the full scale so it can be published as an appendix online; Australian Critical Care does not accept scale development papers which are not accompanied by a copy of the full scale.

For papers reporting the testing of existing scales, the reference of the original paper reporting the scale should be cited. When the original scale has not previously been published, and where possible, authors are encouraged to obtain written permission from the copyright owner of the scale to reproduce it, and ensure that it is credited appropriately. If original developers of the scale want to retain copyright they can mark it as reproduced with their permission.

If the scale is in a language other than English, then it must be accompanied by an English translation. If the newly developed scale is a translation of an existing scale then Australian Critical Care requires author(s) to submit written permission from the copyright owner of the original scale to publish the translated version with full credit given also to the original scale (an English translation is still also required).

Reviews and Discussion Papers - 2,000-3,500 words
Australian Critical Care accepts reviews and discussion papers for publication. Authors are encouraged to clearly report the process by which literature was selected for inclusion in the review. The principles of the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses or Meta-analysis of Observational Studies in Epidemiology should be followed where possible.
Reviews, including:
- systematic reviews, which address focused practice questions;
- literature reviews, which provide a thorough analysis of the literature on a broad topic; - policy reviews, i.e. reviews of published literature and policy documents which inform critical care-practice, the organisation of critical care services, or the education and preparation of critical care clinicians will be considered.
Discussion Papers, i.e. scholarly articles of a debating or discursive nature.

Research Critiques - up to 1,500 words + 15 references
Critiques of published research are included in each issue of Australian Critical Care. Authors wanting to contribute to this feature should contact a member of the editorial team editor.acc@acccn.com.au prior to undertaking work on submission. The research selected for critique should be of interest to the Australian and international critical care community, be referenced in an established database (for example, CINAHL, MEDLINE, or EMBASE) and have been previously published in English.
The title of the research review should be different from the title of the paper being reviewed. There is a strong preference for a declarative title to be used, for example Early enteral feeding reduces septic complications in critically ill trauma patients.
The paper should be formatted in two sections. The upper section should provide a summary of the published article and should be no more than 500 words in length. In the summary of the published article please provide detail on the objective, design and setting for the study. The research process used, including any interventions and outcomes measured, a brief summary of results and conclusion reached by the authors should also be presented. Participant details should also be provided. Reproduction of the article abstract is not permitted.

The second section of the submission, which is the critique of the article, should include the relevance of the article to Australian critical care practice, a critique of the methodological quality of the study, ethical considerations, and any limitations of the study. If the conclusions of this study are not congruent with other published work, this should be acknowledged. An assessment of the overall value of the article as a contribution to the literature and its usefulness to critical care practice should be included.

Letters and commentaries - 300-1,500 words
Designed to stimulate academic debate and discussion the Editor invites readers to submit commentaries (up to 1500 words and 5 references) or Letters to the Editor (about 300 words and 5 references) on papers published in the Journal. Contributions that are of general interest, stimulating and meet the standards of scholarship associated with the Journal may be selected for publication in a commentary section or as a standalone contribution. Contributions should be submitted online in the usual way.

Study protocols - up to 2,000 words
Authors should make a case for publication of the protocol. Study protocols which are registered should include the trial registration number (if any) and when the findings are due to be reported.



Australian Critical Care is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (http://publicationethics.org) and abides by its Code of Conduct and Best Practice Guidelines for Editors.

Submitted papers should be relevant to critical care practice and authors should place their paper within the international context. Details of national practices, policies, law, etc. should be provided in the paper to provide information for all readers of Australian Critical Care. If possible, authors should consult a recent issue of the journal to assess style and presentation of manuscripts published. The journal is widely distributed internationally, and for many readers English is a second language, therefore authors are requested to write in plain English and use terminology which is internationally acceptable.

CONSIDERATIONS SPECIFIC TO TYPES OF RESEARCH DESIGNS

The editors require that manuscripts adhere to recognised reporting guidelines relevant to the research design used. These identify matters that should be addressed in your paper. These are not quality assessment frameworks and your study need not meet all the criteria implied in the reporting guideline to be worthy of publication in the journal. The checklists do identify essential matters that should be considered and reported. For example, a controlled trial may or may not be blinded but it is important that the paper identifies whether or not participants, clinicians and outcome assessors were aware of treatment assignments.

You are encouraged (although not required) to submit a checklist from the appropriate reporting guideline together with your paper as a guide to the editors and reviewers of your paper

Common reporting guidelines are listed below:

Authors are encouraged to consult the EQUATOR Network website for updated and new reporting guidelines (see http://www.equator-network.org/)

Observational cohort, case control and cross sectional studies - STROBE - Strengthening the Reporting of Observational Studies in Epidemiology http://www.equator-network.org/ reporting-guidelines/strobe/

Quasi-experimental/non-randomised evaluations - TREND - Transparent Reporting of Evaluations with Non-randomized Designs http://www.equator-network.org/ reporting-guidelines/trend/

Randomised (and quasi-randomised) controlled trial - CONSORT - Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials http://www.equator-network.org/ reporting-guidelines/consort/

Study of Diagnostic accuracy/assessment scale - STARD - Standards for the Reporting of Diagnostic Accuracy Studies http://www.equator-network.org/ reporting-guidelines/stard/

Systematic Review of Controlled Trials - PRISMA - Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses http://www.equator-network.org/ reporting-guidelines/prisma/

Systematic Review of Observational Studies - MOOSE - Meta-analysis of Observational Studies in Epidemiology http://www.equator-network.org/ reporting-guidelines/moose/

Standards for reporting quality improvement in health care - SQUIRE - Standards for Quality Improvement Reporting Excellence http://squire-statement.org./guidelines

Basic statistical reporting for articles published in biomedical journals - SAMPL - Statistical Analyses and Methods in the Published Literature http://www.equator-network.org/reporting-guidelines/sampl

Reporting Case Studies - CARE - CAse REports http://www.care-statement.org/care-checklist.html

Qualitative studies - COREQ - Consolidated criteria for reporting qualitative research. http://www.equator-network.org/reporting-guidelines/coreq

Synthesis of Qualitative Research - ENTREQ - Enhancing transparency in reporting the synthesis of qualitative research http://www.equator-network.org/reporting-guidelines/entreq

Human and animal rights

The journal does not accept manuscripts containing animal experimentation.

If the work involves human subjects, the author should ensure that the work described has been carried out in accordance with The Code of Ethics of the World Medical Association (Declaration of Helsinki) for experiments involving humans http://www.wma.net/en/30publications/10policies/b3/index.html; Uniform Requirements for manuscripts submitted to Biomedical journals http://www.icmje.org. Authors should include a statement in the manuscript that informed consent was obtained for experimentation with human subjects. The privacy rights of human subjects must always be observed.

All studies must be conducted to the highest ethical standard in accordance with local regulations and standards for gaining ethical approval / clearance.

For information on Ethics in Publishing and Ethical guidelines for journal publication see http://www.elsevier.com/authorethics and http://www.elsevier.com/ethicalguidelines. The approving body and (if relevant) approval number should be identified.

Conflict of interest

All authors must disclose any financial and personal relationships with other people or organizations that could inappropriately influence (bias) their work. Examples of potential conflicts of interest include employment, consultancies, stock ownership, honoraria, paid expert testimony, patent applications/registrations, and grants or other funding. If there are no conflicts of interest then please state this: 'Conflicts of interest: none'. See also http://www.elsevier.com/conflictsofinterest. Further information and an example of a Conflict of Interest form can be found at: http://help.elsevier.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/286/p/7923.

Submission declaration

Submission of an article implies that the work described has not been published previously (except in the form of an abstract or as part of a published lecture or academic thesis or as an electronic preprint, see http://www.elsevier.com/sharingpolicy), that it is not under consideration for publication elsewhere, that its publication is approved by all authors and tacitly or explicitly by the responsible authorities where the work was carried out, and that, if accepted, it will not be published elsewhere including electronically in the same form, in English or in any other language, without the written consent of the copyright-holder.

Other/multiple and parallel publications
The journal seeks to publish original papers that make a substantial innovative contribution. Generally, the ample word limits provided by Australian Critical Care permit authors to publish all aspects of a study within a single paper. We do recognise that larger studies are often complex and lend themselves to more than one publication. In order to aid editorial decisions about distinctiveness and to avoid inadvertent duplication please upload copies of all previous, current and under review publications from this study.

All published and in press accounts of a study from which data is referred to in a manuscript, and any relationship between information presented and other publications from the same study, must be made clear. It is not sufficient to simply cite a prior publication - the text must state that results are from the same study. Citation of publications 'in press' is acceptable, provided that full details are given.

If other publications are under review or in preparation this should be mentioned in your letter to the editor and you should give an undertaking that you will take all possible steps to ensure subsequent publications contain a reference to your publication in Australian Critical Care if you are successful. The study should be referred to by a distinctive name which will be used in any future publications to identify that it is the same study.

Contributors

Each author is required to declare his or her individual contribution to the article: all authors must have materially participated in the research and/or article preparation, so roles for all authors should be described. The statement that all authors have approved the final article should be true and included in the disclosure.

In the Title Page, please specify the contributions made by each author of the manuscript. This information will be included at the end of the published paper.

All authors should have made substantial contributions to all of the following: (1) the conception or design of the work; or the acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data for the work, AND (2) drafting the article or revising it critically for important intellectual content, AND (3) final approval of the version to be submitted, AND (4) agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.

At time of submission, we require all authors to indicate their contribution to the work, that they have approved the final version and agree to be accountable for all aspects of the work.

Those who meet some but not all of the criteria for authors can be identified as 'contributors' at the end of the manuscript with their contribution specified. All those individuals who provided help during the research (e.g. collecting data, providing language help, writing assistance or proofreading the article, etc.) that do not meet criteria for authorship should be acknowledged in the paper.

Authorship

All authors should have made substantial contributions to all of the following: (1) the conception or design of the work; or the acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data for the work, AND (2) drafting the article or revising it critically for important intellectual content, AND (3) final approval of the version to be submitted, AND (4) agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.

Papers with 10 or more authors should give a corporate name for the research group (e.g. ATLAS Research Group) and list all authors and contributors [as defined above] in the Title Page. Any acknowledgements should be listed additionally, as described above. We ask that roles for each and every author be individually described, with reference to the criteria for authorship.

Author Agreement Statement - You must make a true statement that all authors have approved the final article, agree to be accountable for all aspects of the work and acknowledge that all those entitled to authorship are listed as authors. Sample text of an Author Agreement Statement can be downloaded here.

Changes to authorship

This policy concerns the addition, deletion, or rearrangement of author names in the authorship of accepted manuscripts:
Before the accepted manuscript is published in an online issue: Requests to add or remove an author, or to rearrange the author names, must be sent to the Journal Manager from the corresponding author of the accepted manuscript and must include: (a) the reason the name should be added or removed, or the author names rearranged and (b) written confirmation (e-mail, fax, letter) from all authors that they agree with the addition, removal or rearrangement. In the case of addition or removal of authors, this includes confirmation from the author being added or removed. Requests that are not sent by the corresponding author will be forwarded by the Journal Manager to the corresponding author, who must follow the procedure as described above. Note that: (1) Journal Managers will inform the Journal Editors of any such requests and (2) publication of the accepted manuscript in an online issue is suspended until authorship has been agreed.
After the accepted manuscript is published in an online issue: Any requests to add, delete, or rearrange author names in an article published in an online issue will follow the same policies as noted above and result in a corrigendum.

Clinical trial results

In line with the position of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors, the journal will not consider results posted in the same clinical trials registry in which primary registration resides to be prior publication if the results posted are presented in the form of a brief structured (less than 500 words) abstract or table. However, divulging results in other circumstances (e.g., investors' meetings) is discouraged and may jeopardise consideration of the manuscript. Authors should fully disclose all posting in registries of results of the same or closely related work.

Reporting clinical trials

Randomized controlled trials should be presented according to the CONSORT guidelines. At manuscript submission, authors must provide the CONSORT checklist accompanied by a flow diagram that illustrates the progress of patients through the trial, including recruitment, enrollment, randomization, withdrawal and completion, and a detailed description of the randomization procedure. The CONSORT checklist and template flow diagram can be found on http://www.consort-statement.org.

Registration of clinical trials

Registration in a public trials registry is a condition for publication of clinical trials in this journal in accordance with International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE, http://www.icmje.org) recommendations. Trials must register at or before the onset of patient enrolment. The clinical trial registration number should be included at the end of the abstract of the article. A clinical trial is defined as any research study that prospectively assigns human participants or groups of humans to one or more health-related interventions to evaluate the effects of health outcomes. Health-related interventions include any intervention used to modify a biomedical or health-related outcome (for example drugs, surgical procedures, devices, behavioural treatments, dietary interventions, and process-of-care changes). Health outcomes include any biomedical or health-related measures obtained in patients or participants, including pharmacokinetic measures and adverse events. Purely observational studies (those in which the assignment of the medical intervention is not at the discretion of the investigator) will not require registration.

We encourage the prospective registration of studies. Where a study has been registered please give the number in your Author Checklist (e.g. ISRCTN) and include the registration number within the title, abstract or body of the paper as appropriate.

Article transfer service

This journal is part of our Article Transfer Service. This means that if the Editor feels your article is more suitable in one of our other participating journals, then you may be asked to consider transferring the article to one of those. If you agree, your article will be transferred automatically on your behalf with no need to reformat. Please note that your article will be reviewed again by the new journal. More information about this can be found here: http://www.elsevier.com/authors/article-transfer-service.

Upon acceptance of an article, authors will be asked to complete a 'Journal Publishing Agreement' (for more information on this and copyright see http://www.elsevier.com/copyright). This enables the Publisher to administer Copyright on behalf of the Authors and the Society, whilst allowing the continued use of the material by the Author for Scholarly communication. An e-mail will be sent to the corresponding author confirming receipt of the manuscript together with a 'Journal Publishing Agreement' form or a link to the online version of this agreement.

Subscribers may reproduce tables of contents or prepare lists of articles including abstracts for internal circulation within their institutions. Permission of the Publisher is required for resale or distribution outside the institution and for all other derivative works, including compilations and translations (please consult http://www.elsevier.com/permissions). If excerpts from other copyrighted works are included, the author(s) must obtain written permission from the copyright owners and credit the source(s) in the article. Elsevier has pre-printed forms for use by authors in these cases: please consult http://www.elsevier.com/permissions.

This journal offers authors a choice in publishing their research: Open access and Subscription.

As an author you (or your employer or institution) may do the following:
• make copies (print or electronic) of the article for your own personal use, including for your own classroom teaching use
• make copies and distribute such copies (including through e-mail) of the article to research colleagues, for the personal use by such colleagues (but not commercially or systematically, e.g., via an e-mail list or list server)
• post a pre-print version of the article on Internet websites including electronic pre-print servers, and to retain indefinitely such version on such servers or sites
• post a revised personal version of the final text of the article (to reflect changes made in the peer review and editing process) on your personal or institutional website or server, with a link to the journal homepage http://www.australiancriticalcare.com
• present the article at a meeting or conference and to distribute copies of the article to the delegates attending such a meeting
• for your employer, if the article is a 'work for hire', made within the scope of your employment, your employer may use all or part of the information in the article for other intra-company use (e.g., training)
• retain patent and trademark rights and rights to any processes or procedure described in the article
• include the article in full or in part in a thesis or dissertation (provided that this is not to be published commercially)
• use the article or any part thereof in a printed compilation of your works, such as collected writings or lecture notes (subsequent to publication of your article in the journal)
• prepare other derivative works, to extend the article into book-length form, or to otherwise re-use portions or excerpts in other works, with full acknowledgement of its original publication in the journal.

Role of the funding source

You are requested to identify who provided financial support for the conduct of the research and/or preparation of the article and to briefly describe the role of the sponsor(s), if any, in study design; in the collection, analysis and interpretation of data; in the writing of the report; and in the decision to submit the article for publication. If the funding source(s) had no such involvement then this should be stated.

Please see http://www.elsevier.com/funding

Funding body agreements and policies

Elsevier has established a number of agreements with funding bodies which allow authors to comply with their funder's open access policies. Some authors may also be reimbursed for associated publication fees. To learn more about existing agreements please visit http://www.elsevier.com/fundingbodies.

Open access

This journal offers authors a choice in publishing their research:

Open access
• Articles are freely available to both subscribers and the wider public with permitted reuse
• An open access publication fee is payable by authors or on their behalf e.g. by their research funder or institution
Subscription
• Articles are made available to subscribers as well as developing countries and patient groups through our universal access programs (http://www.elsevier.com/access).
• No open access publication fee payable by authors.

Regardless of how you choose to publish your article, the journal will apply the same peer review criteria and acceptance standards.

For open access articles, permitted third party (re)use is defined by the following Creative Commons user licenses:

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs (CC BY-NC-ND)
For non-commercial purposes, lets others distribute and copy the article, and to include in a collective work (such as an anthology), as long as they credit the author(s) and provided they do not alter or modify the article.

The publication fee for this journal is USD 1700, excluding taxes. Learn more about Elsevier's pricing policy: http://www.elsevier.com/openaccesspricing.

Language (usage and editing services)

Please write your text in good English (American or British usage is accepted, but not a mixture of these). Authors who feel their English language manuscript may require editing to eliminate possible grammatical or spelling errors and to conform to correct scientific English may wish to use the English Language Editing service available from Elsevier's WebShop (http://webshop.elsevier.com/languageediting/) or visit our customer support site (http://support.elsevier.com) for more information.

Submission

Our online submission system guides you stepwise through the process of entering your article details and uploading your files. The system converts your article files to a single PDF file used in the peer-review process. Editable files (e.g., Word, LaTeX) are required to typeset your article for final publication. All correspondence, including notification of the Editor's decision and requests for revision, is sent by e-mail.

Submit your article
Please submit your article via http://ees.elsevier.com/aucc.

Referees

Please submit the names and institutional e-mail addresses of several potential referees. For more details, visit our Support site. Note that the editor retains the sole right to decide whether or not the suggested reviewers are used.

Review process

The decision to publish a paper is based on an editorial assessment and peer review.

Initially all papers are assessed by a member of the editorial team to decide whether to send a paper for peer review and to give a rapid decision on those that are not.

Editorials and Commentaries may be accepted at this stage but in all other cases the decision is to reject the paper or to send it for peer review. Papers which do not meet basic standards or are unlikely to be published irrespective of a positive peer review, for example because their novel contribution is insufficient or the relevance to the discipline is unclear, may be rejected at this point in order to avoid delays to authors who may wish to seek publication elsewhere.

Occasionally a paper will be returned to the author with requests for revisions in order to assist the editors in deciding whether or not to send it out for review. Authors can expect a decision from this stage of the review process within 2-3 weeks of submission.

Manuscripts going forward to the review process are reviewed by members of an international expert panel. All such papers will undergo a double blind peer review by two or more reviewers. We take every reasonable step to ensure author identity is concealed during the review process. We aim to complete this process within 8 weeks of the decision to review although occasionally delays do happen and authors should allow at least 12 weeks from submissions before contacting the journal. The Editor-in-Chief reserves the right to the final decision regarding acceptance.

Queries For questions about the editorial process (including the status of manuscripts under review) please contact the editorial office aucc@elsevier.com.

For technical support on submissions please contact http://epsupport.elsevier.com



Submitted papers should be relevant to an international audience and authors should not assume knowledge of national practices, policies, law, etc. Authors should consult a recent issue of the journal to assess style and presentation of published manuscripts. Since the journal is distributed all over the world, and as English is a second language for many readers, authors are requested to write in plain English and use terminology which is internationally acceptable.

Use of word processing software

It is important that the file be saved in the native format of the word processor used. The text should be in single-column format. Keep the layout of the text as simple as possible. Most formatting codes will be removed and replaced on processing the article. In particular, do not use the word processor's options to justify text or to hyphenate words. However, do use bold face, italics, subscripts, superscripts etc. When preparing tables, if you are using a table grid, use only one grid for each individual table and not a grid for each row. If no grid is used, use tabs, not spaces, to align columns. The electronic text should be prepared in a way very similar to that of conventional manuscripts (see also the Guide to Publishing with Elsevier: http://www.elsevier.com/guidepublication). Note that source files of figures, tables and text graphics will be required whether or not you embed your figures in the text. See also the section on Electronic artwork.
To avoid unnecessary errors you are strongly advised to use the 'spell-check' and 'grammar-check' functions of your word processor.

Manuscript text
Font size of 11 or 10 pt, double-spaced, margins 2.5 cm (or 1 inch), line numbers, and numbered pages. Manuscripts should also comply with specifications for the type of manuscript being submitted.

DOCUMENTATION REQUIRED AT SUBMISSION STAGE

Manuscripts must be accompanied by the following files for submission:

Covering letter - to the editor in which you detail matters you wish the editors to consider.

Reporting Guideline Checklist - if applicable

Author Agreement Statement - You must make a true statement that all authors have approved the final article, agree to be accountable for all aspects of the work and acknowledge that all those entitled to authorship are listed as authors. Sample text of an Author Agreement Statement can be downloaded here.

Title page - See section on "Essential title page information". The manuscript document itself MUST NOT contain any of the Author(s) details - for the purpose of the blind peer-review process

Ethics approval - as appropriate.

Informed consent - Where applicable authors must confirm that informed consent was obtained from human participants and that ethical clearance was obtained from the appropriate authority. This can also be uploaded under "Permissions Obtained"

Permissions Obtained - Permission to reproduce previously published material must be obtained in writing from the copyright holder (usually the publisher) and acknowledged in the manuscript. Written permission from both masked and unmasked patients appearing in photographs must be obtained by the authors and uploaded with the manuscript as a Permissions Obtained document type.

Article structure

Title

Abstract

Introduction
State the objectives of the work and provide an adequate background, avoiding a detailed literature survey or a summary of the results.

Material and methods
Provide sufficient detail to allow the work to be reproduced. Methods already published should be indicated by a reference: only relevant modifications should be described.

Theory/calculation
A Theory section should extend, not repeat, the background to the article already dealt with in the Introduction and lay the foundation for further work. In contrast, a Calculation section represents a practical development from a theoretical basis.

Results
Results should be clear and concise.

Discussion
This should explore the significance of the results of the work, not repeat them. A combined Results and Discussion section is often appropriate. Avoid extensive citations and discussion of published literature.

Conclusions
The main conclusions of the study may be presented in a short Conclusions section, which may stand alone or form a subsection of a Discussion or Results and Discussion section.

Essential title page information

Title. Concise and informative. Titles are often used in information-retrieval systems. Avoid abbreviations and formulae where possible.
Author names and affiliations. Please clearly indicate the given name(s) and family name(s) of each author and check that all names are accurately spelled. Present the authors' affiliation addresses (where the actual work was done) below the names. Indicate all affiliations with a lower-case superscript letter immediately after the author's name and in front of the appropriate address. Provide the full postal address of each affiliation, including the country name and, if available, the e-mail address of each author.
Corresponding author. Clearly indicate who will handle correspondence at all stages of refereeing and publication, also post-publication. Ensure that the e-mail address is given and that contact details are kept up to date by the corresponding author.
Present/permanent address. If an author has moved since the work described in the article was done, or was visiting at the time, a 'Present address' (or 'Permanent address') may be indicated as a footnote to that author's name. The address at which the author actually did the work must be retained as the main, affiliation address. Superscript Arabic numerals are used for such footnotes.

Abstract

Abstracts should be less than 300 words, and should not include references or abbreviations.

Abstracts of Research papers must be structured and should adopt the headings suggested by the relevant reporting guidelines (see below). In general they should include the following Background; Objectives; Methods (which would normally include the design, settings, participants); Results or Findings, report main outcome(s) / findings including (where relevant) levels of statistical significance and confidence intervals; and Conclusions, which should relate to study aims and hypotheses.

Abstracts for Reviews should provide a summary under the following headings, where possible: Objectives, Review method used, Data sources, Review methods, Results, Conclusions.

Abstracts for Book review articles and Discussion papers should provide a concise summary of the line of argument pursued and conclusions.

Keywords

Provide between four and ten key words in alphabetical order, which accurately identify the paper's subject, purpose, method and focus. Use the Medical Subject Headings (MeSH ®) thesaurus or Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health (CINAHL) headings where possible (see http://www.nlm.nih.gov/mesh/meshhome.html).

Abbreviations

Avoid the use of abbreviations unless they are likely to be widely recognised. In particular you should avoid abbreviating key concepts in your paper where readers might not already be familiar with the abbreviation. Any abbreviations which the authors intend to use should be written out in full and followed by the letters in brackets the first time they appear, thereafter only the letters without brackets should be used.

Acknowledgements

All those individuals who provided help during the research (e.g. collecting data, providing language help, writing assistance or proofreading the article, etc.) that do not meet criteria for authorship should be acknowledged at the end of the manuscript, before the References. Acknowledgement of organisations providing funding to support the research should also be acknowledged.

Units

Follow internationally accepted rules and conventions: use the international system of units (SI). If other units are mentioned, please give their equivalent in SI.

Math formulae

Please submit math equations as editable text and not as images. Present simple formulae in line with normal text where possible and use the solidus (/) instead of a horizontal line for small fractional terms, e.g., X/Y. In principle, variables are to be presented in italics. Powers of e are often more conveniently denoted by exp. Number consecutively any equations that have to be displayed separately from the text (if referred to explicitly in the text).

Statistics - Standard methods of presenting statistical material should be used. Where methods used are not widely recognised explanation and full reference to widely accessible sources must be given.
Exact p values should be given to no more than three decimal places.

Wherever possible give both point estimates and confidence intervals for all population parameters estimated by the study (e.g. group differences, frequency of characteristics).

Identify the statistical package used (please note that SPSS has not been "Statistical Package for the Social Sciences" for many years).

Footnotes

Footnotes are not used in the journal.

Artwork

Electronic artwork
General points
• Make sure you use uniform lettering and sizing of your original artwork.
• Embed the used fonts if the application provides that option.
• Aim to use the following fonts in your illustrations: Arial, Courier, Times New Roman, Symbol, or use fonts that look similar.
• Number the illustrations according to their sequence in the text.
• Use a logical naming convention for your artwork files.
• Provide captions to illustrations separately.
• Size the illustrations close to the desired dimensions of the published version.
• Submit each illustration as a separate file.
A detailed guide on electronic artwork is available on our website:
http://www.elsevier.com/artworkinstructions.
You are urged to visit this site; some excerpts from the detailed information are given here.
Formats
If your electronic artwork is created in a Microsoft Office application (Word, PowerPoint, Excel) then please supply 'as is' in the native document format.
Regardless of the application used other than Microsoft Office, when your electronic artwork is finalized, please 'Save as' or convert the images to one of the following formats (note the resolution requirements for line drawings, halftones, and line/halftone combinations given below):
EPS (or PDF): Vector drawings, embed all used fonts.
TIFF (or JPEG): Color or grayscale photographs (halftones), keep to a minimum of 300 dpi.
TIFF (or JPEG): Bitmapped (pure black & white pixels) line drawings, keep to a minimum of 1000 dpi.
TIFF (or JPEG): Combinations bitmapped line/half-tone (color or grayscale), keep to a minimum of 500 dpi.
Please do not:
• Supply files that are optimized for screen use (e.g., GIF, BMP, PICT, WPG); these typically have a low number of pixels and limited set of colors;
• Supply files that are too low in resolution;
• Submit graphics that are disproportionately large for the content.

Color artwork
Please make sure that artwork files are in an acceptable format (TIFF (or JPEG), EPS (or PDF), or MS Office files) and with the correct resolution. If, together with your accepted article, you submit usable color figures then Elsevier will ensure, at no additional charge, that these figures will appear in color online (e.g., ScienceDirect and other sites) regardless of whether or not these illustrations are reproduced in color in the printed version. For color reproduction in print, you will receive information regarding the costs from Elsevier after receipt of your accepted article. Please indicate your preference for color: in print or online only. For further information on the preparation of electronic artwork, please see http://www.elsevier.com/artworkinstructions.
Please note: Because of technical complications that can arise by converting color figures to 'gray scale' (for the printed version should you not opt for color in print) please submit in addition usable black and white versions of all the color illustrations.

Illustration services

Elsevier's WebShop (http://webshop.elsevier.com/illustrationservices) offers Illustration Services to authors preparing to submit a manuscript but concerned about the quality of the images accompanying their article. Elsevier's expert illustrators can produce scientific, technical and medical-style images, as well as a full range of charts, tables and graphs. Image 'polishing' is also available, where our illustrators take your image(s) and improve them to a professional standard. Please visit the website to find out more.

Figure captions
Ensure that each illustration has a caption. Supply captions separately, not attached to the figure. A caption should comprise a brief title (not on the figure itself) and a description of the illustration. Keep text in the illustrations themselves to a minimum but explain all symbols and abbreviations used.

Tables

There should be no more than five tables and figures in total and included in a separate file. All tables and figures should be clearly labelled, and avoid using Bold lettering. Tables should be uploaded in the original application. Do not imbed Tables as images. If your manuscript includes more than five tables in total, or for very large tables, these can be uploaded as Supplementary Material and will be included as such in the online version of your article.

References

Usually no more than three references should be used to support a single idea. Avoid citation of personal communications or unpublished material. Citations to material in press (i.e. accepted for publication) are acceptable and such references should include details of the digital object identifier (DOI). Citation of material currently under consideration elsewhere (e.g. "under review" or "submitted") is not acceptable.

All publications cited in the text should be presented in a list of references following the text of the manuscript. In text references should be listed as consecutive numbers which are superscript above the text. The full reference should be cited in a numbered list at the end of the manuscript. References should follow the National Library of Medicine's Style Guide for Authors, Editors and Publishers http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK7256/.

Examples of references are shown below.

1. Williams TA, Leslie GD. Beyond the walls: A review of ICI clinics and their impact on patient outcomes after leaving hospital. Aust Crit Care. 2008;21(1):6-17.
2. Baldwin I, Leslie G. Support of renal function. IN: Elliot D, Aitken LM, Chaboyer W, editors. ACCCN's Critical Care Nursing. Sydney: Elsevier; 2006. p.367-396.
3. Cairo JM. Hemodynamic monitoring. IN: Pilbeam S, editor. Mechanical ventilation: physiological and clinical applications. 4th ed. St Louis: Mosby; 2006. p. 231-255.
4. Happell B. The influence of education on the career preferences of undergraduate nursing students. Aust Electron J Nurs Educ [Internet]. 2002 Apr [cited 2007 Jan 8];8(1):[about 12 p.]. Available from: http://www.scu.edu.au?schools/nhcp/aejne/vol8-1/refereed/happell_max.html
5. Kneyber MCJ, Rinensberger PC. The need for and feasibility of a pediatric ventilation trial: Reflections on a survey among pediatric intensivists. Ped Crit Care Med. Forthcoming. doi: 10.1097/PCC.0b013e31824fbc37.

Web references
As a minimum, the full URL should be given and the date when the reference was last accessed. Any further information, if known (DOI, author names, dates, reference to a source publication, etc.), should also be given. Web references can be listed separately (e.g., after the reference list) under a different heading if desired, or can be included in the reference list.

For journal articles published online only the Digital Object Identifier (DOI) must be included.

References in a special issue
Please ensure that the words 'this issue' are added to any references in the list (and any citations in the text) to other articles in the same Special Issue.

Journal abbreviations source
Journal names should be abbreviated according to the List of Title Word Abbreviations: http://www.issn.org/services/online-services/access-to-the-ltwa/.

AudioSlides

The journal encourages authors to create an AudioSlides presentation with their published article. AudioSlides are brief, webinar-style presentations that are shown next to the online article on ScienceDirect. This gives authors the opportunity to summarize their research in their own words and to help readers understand what the paper is about. More information and examples are available at http://www.elsevier.com/audioslides. Authors of this journal will automatically receive an invitation e-mail to create an AudioSlides presentation after acceptance of their paper.

Supplementary material

Elsevier accepts electronic supplementary material to support and enhance your scientific research. Supplementary files offer the author additional possibilities to publish supporting applications, high-resolution images, background datasets, sound clips and more. Supplementary files supplied will be published online alongside the electronic version of your article in Elsevier Web products, including ScienceDirect: http://www.sciencedirect.com. In order to ensure that your submitted material is directly usable, please provide the data in one of our recommended file formats. Authors should submit the material in electronic format together with the article and supply a concise and descriptive caption for each file. For more detailed instructions please visit our artwork instruction pages at http://www.elsevier.com/artworkinstructions.

Submission checklist

The following list will be useful during the final checking of an article prior to sending it to the journal for review. Please consult this Guide for Authors for further details of any item.
Ensure that the following items are present:
One author has been designated as the corresponding author with contact details:
• E-mail address
• Full postal address
All necessary files have been uploaded, and contain:
• Keywords
• All figure captions
• All tables (including title, description, footnotes)
Further considerations
• Manuscript has been 'spell-checked' and 'grammar-checked'
• References are in the correct format for this journal
• All references mentioned in the Reference list are cited in the text, and vice versa
• Permission has been obtained for use of copyrighted material from other sources (including the Internet)
Printed version of figures (if applicable) in color or black-and-white
• Indicate clearly whether or not color or black-and-white in print is required.
• For reproduction in black-and-white, please supply black-and-white versions of the figures for printing purposes.
For any further information please visit our customer support site at http://support.elsevier.com.

Manuscript - font size of 11 or 10 pt double-spaced with margins 2.5 cm at least (or 1 inch), line numbers and numbered pages. Depending on the paper type this should include the title, abstract, key words, text, references, tables, figure legends, figures, appendix.

Use of the Digital Object Identifier

The Digital Object Identifier (DOI) may be used to cite and link to electronic documents. The DOI consists of a unique alpha-numeric character string which is assigned to a document by the publisher upon the initial electronic publication. The assigned DOI never changes. Therefore, it is an ideal medium for citing a document, particularly 'Articles in press' because they have not yet received their full bibliographic information. Example of a correctly given DOI (in URL format; here an article in the journal Physics Letters B):
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.physletb.2010.09.059
When you use a DOI to create links to documents on the web, the DOIs are guaranteed never to change.

Online proof correction

Corresponding authors will receive an e-mail with a link to our online proofing system, allowing annotation and correction of proofs online. The environment is similar to MS Word: in addition to editing text, you can also comment on figures/tables and answer questions from the Copy Editor. Web-based proofing provides a faster and less error-prone process by allowing you to directly type your corrections, eliminating the potential introduction of errors.
If preferred, you can still choose to annotate and upload your edits on the PDF version. All instructions for proofing will be given in the e-mail we send to authors, including alternative methods to the online version and PDF.
We will do everything possible to get your article published quickly and accurately. Please use this proof only for checking the typesetting, editing, completeness and correctness of the text, tables and figures. Significant changes to the article as accepted for publication will only be considered at this stage with permission from the Editor. It is important to ensure that all corrections are sent back to us in one communication. Please check carefully before replying, as inclusion of any subsequent corrections cannot be guaranteed. Proofreading is solely your responsibility.

Offprints

The corresponding author, at no cost, will be provided with a personalized link providing 50 days free access to the final published version of the article on ScienceDirect. This link can also be used for sharing via email and social networks. For an extra charge, paper offprints can be ordered via the offprint order form which is sent once the article is accepted for publication. Both corresponding and co-authors may order offprints at any time via Elsevier's WebShop (http://webshop.elsevier.com/myarticleservices/offprints). Authors requiring printed copies of multiple articles may use Elsevier WebShop's 'Create Your Own Book' service to collate multiple articles within a single cover (http://webshop.elsevier.com/myarticleservices/booklets).



You can track your submitted article at http://www.elsevier.com/track-submission. You can track your accepted article at http://www.elsevier.com/trackarticle. You are also welcome to contact Customer Support via http://support.elsevier.com.