Instructions for authors
Manuscripts for submission
Manuscripts submitted to CDI must be offered exclusively to the journal.
Communicable Diseases Surveillance
Authorship l Types of manuscript l Peer review process l Document preparation l Tables l Figures and illustrations l References l Ethics l Copyright
All manuscripts should be accompanied by a covering letter that should include:
- a list of all authors;
- confirmation that the manuscript content (in part or in full) has not been submitted or published elsewhere; and
- whether the manuscript is being submitted as an article, short report, surveillance summary, outbreak report or case report.
- In addition, manuscripts should include a title page that should contain the following information:
- title (e.g. Prof, Dr, Ms, Miss, Mrs, Mr), full name including middle initial, position held, and institution at the time the article was produced, of each author;
- name of corresponding author, including current postal address, telephone, and email; and
- word count of the main text and of the abstract.
Original ArticlesThe text of articles must be structured to contain an abstract, introduction, methods, results, discussion, acknowledgments and references. Manuscripts submitted as articles must be 3,000 words or less and will be peer-reviewed.
Original articles may be submitted at any time and will be included in the issue once their review and revision has been completed. Articles may be published ahead of the next issue, in the “early release” format.
Systematic reviews submitted to CDI will be expected to conform to the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines. Refer to: http://www.prisma-statement.org/
Short reportsShort reports may be submitted for peer review or for publication without peer review, depending on the content. Articles of particular relevance for rapid dissemination (such as timely outbreak reports) may be fast-tracked for early release prior to the next issue of CDI. Please discuss your requirements with the editorial team. Short reports may include an unstructured abstract. Types of short reports include:
Surveillance summariesA report of 1,000 words or less that briefly reports on changes in the local epidemiology of a communicable disease, changes in surveillance systems, or new interventions, such as introducing vaccination in an at-risk group. Surveillance summaries should provide a brief description of the setting and a discussion of the significance of the events, changes or interventions.
Outbreak reportsReports of communicable disease outbreaks of 500 to 1,000 words will be considered for publication based on their public health significance. Reports should include details of the investigation, including results of interventions and the significance of the outbreak for public health practice. More comprehensive reports on outbreaks should be submitted as articles.
Case reportsBrief reports of 500 to 1,000 words on unique cases of communicable disease will be considered based on their public health significance. Authors must note the instructions on the protection of patient's right to privacy (see Ethics committee approvals and patients’ right to privacy below). Some discussion of the significance of the case for communicable disease control should be included.
Letters to the EditorThe editorial team welcome comments on articles published in CDI in the form of letters to the Editor. Letters should normally be less than 500 words, include no more than a single chart and less than six references.
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When submitting your manuscript, you may specify reviewers who are qualified to referee the work, who are not close colleagues and who would not have a conflict of interest. Suggestions regarding reviewers will be considered, however, the editorial team have the final decision as to who to invite to review a particular article.
Authors may be asked to revise articles as a result of the review process before the final decision about publication is made by the Editor. Revised articles are to be returned with a covering letter addressing each comment made by each reviewer.
Annual reports and quarterly reports are not subject to peer review.
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Articles are only accepted in electronic form, in Microsoft Word and Microsoft Excel. Graphics may be provided in a range of other formats (see section below on illustrations).
- Arial font is preferred but if not available use Times New Roman.
- Abstracts should not exceed 250 words. Do not cite references in abstracts.
- Structured abstracts are acceptable for original articles only.
- Include up to 10 keywords.
- Avoid too many abbreviations.
- Do not use numbered paragraphs.
- Do not use page numbering.
- Do not use headers or footers.
Manuscripts should be submitted with a one or two sentence summary of the article.
Further information on styles and conventions for CDI.
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- Tables and table headings should be located within the body of the manuscript and all tables should be referred to within the results section.
- Information in tables should not be duplicated in the text.
- Headings should be brief.
- Simplify the information as much as possible, keeping the number of columns to a minimum.
- Separate rows or columns are to be used for each information type (e.g. percentage and number should be in separate columns rather than having one in parentheses in the same column).
- If abbreviations are used these should be explained in a footnote.
- Footnotes should use the following symbols in sequence: * † ‡ § || ¶ ** †† ‡‡
- Do not use borders, or blank rows or blank columns for spacing.
- A short summary of each table should be included to satisfy government accessibility requirements (see section on accessibility requirements).
A short summary should be included to satisfy government accessibility requirements (see accessibility requirements).
- Use Microsoft Excel for Windows.
- Each figure should be created on a separate worksheet rather than as an object in the datasheet (use the ‘as new sheet’ option for chart location).
- The numerical data used to create each figure must be included on a separate worksheet.
- Worksheets should be appropriately titled to distinguish each graph.
- Do not include the graph heading on the Excel worksheet.
- Further information on formatting figures is provided in the format for figures in CDI section.
- cdi graphs example.xls (54 KB)
- Illustrations or flow charts can be included if required.
- Images should preferably be at least 300 dpi.
- Electronic copies of computer-generated illustrations should preferably be saved in a vector image program such as Adobe Illustrator but other similar graphic software is acceptable. Files should be saved in one of the following graphic formats (in preferential order): AI, TIFF, EPS, or GIF.
- Use a sans serif font for figures (e.g. arial). Symbols, lettering and numbering should be clear and large enough to be legible when reduced in size.
- Photographs may be submitted if required.
- Photos need to be at least 300 dpi.
- Electronic copies should be saved in Adobe Photoshop, or similar graphic software in one of the following graphic formats (in preferential order): PSD, TIFF, EPS, AIor JPEG (JPG).Top of page
- Electronic copies of maps should be saved in Adobe Photoshop, or similar graphic software in one of the following graphic formats (in preferential order): PSD, TIFF, EPS, or GIF.
- Thermal maps created by mapping programs such as MapInfo or Arc GIS should be saved at 300 dpi and in one of the following graphic formats (in preferential order): TIFF, EPS, or JPEG (JPG). Authors should aim for maximum levels of contrast between shaded areas. Use a sans serif font for text. Symbols, lettering and numbering should be clear and large enough to be legible when reduced in size.
Web Accessibility RequirementsThe Australian Government is now required to meet new web site accessibility guidelines, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines version 2.0 (WCAG 2.0). These guidelines include the need for alternate methods of presenting the information depicted in images - including figures and maps - for vision impaired people using text readers. Complex tables also present challenges for text readers.
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Articles and reports should be submitted with:
- a short summary of any tables
- a long text description of any figures
- a long text description of any maps, flowcharts, or other images. For thermal maps showing disease rates by statistical location, a data table may be a preferred alternative.
Further information about WCAG 2.0 is available from the Australian Government Information Management Office website.
The accuracy of references is the responsibility of authors. Use the Vancouver reference style (see International Committee of Medical Journal Editors. Uniform requirements for manuscripts submitted to biomedical journals. Ann Intern Med 1997;1126:36–47 available from U.S. National Library of Medicine website and abbreviate journal names as in Medline (e.g. Commun Dis Intell). The Medline journal database is also available from the National Center for Biotechnology Information website. Include the surnames and initials of all authors (or only the first six authors, et al, if there are more than six). Cite the first and last page numbers in full, and specify the type of reference (e.g. a letter, an editorial, an abstract, or supplement).
Cite personal communications and unpublished papers in the text, not in the reference list, with the exception of material that has been accepted for publication (in press). Obtain written permission from people cited, and include their title, position and affiliation.
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More detail about reference styles and examples is included on the CDI referencing style page.
When informed consent has been obtained this should be included in the text.
Ethical approval and patient consent may also be required for case reports. Identifying details about patients should be omitted if they are not essential, but data should never be altered or falsified in an attempt to attain anonymity.
Submission of manuscriptsManuscripts should be provided electronically by email to: email@example.com
Please contact the editorial team at firstname.lastname@example.org if you require any further information.
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Revised 21 January 2013.