Ups and Downs in Publishing.
Well, on Sunday I received notice of rejection from a very good journal in the medical informatics field regarding my first research paper here at MECMC. It’s the second rejection for that paper, but we got decent and constructive comments and I feel like I can revise the paper accordingly and resubmit (One reviewer recommended we resubmit the piece to the same journal as a case report instead of a research article; I’m considering it. It’s a strange world I live in, where there is a good case to be made for either designation.). So that was disappointing. I feel like the reviews were constructive enough that a revise and resubmit might have been warranted. Oh well.
But then, today, I received notice that another paper was accepted! This is the paper I wrote about here. Essentially, it’s an administrative piece, a little how-to guide to employing people like me in hospitals, and how to engage in simulation-led improvement work. I’m proud of this piece for a couple of reasons. First, I think it might help administrators make evidence-based decisions in quality and performance improvement, by embracing a new tool for the production of useful evidence. Second, it’s my first ever piece as senior author. I worked with a co-worker here who had never had any academic ambitions, but who is very interested in making a mark in administration and improvement. Even though I wrote most of the first draft, we worked closely together and so I offered him the position of first author, and took last for myself. A few managers and another colleague fill out the middle.
It’s being published in a very respectable specialty journal, in health services quality. Having been accepted today, I anticipate I’ll have proofs in a month or so, and it’ll be online a month after that. Print? Who knows how long. This is not open access. I don’t have the funds for that. But it will hopefully find its way to the right eyes in any case. And of course, if I’m ever trying to convince some hospital other than MECMC to hire me, I’ll be able to show them that I have cogent ideas about how to use the services I offer, rather than simply saying: “I’m really smart and you should hire me and I can make your hospital GO better.”
So it’s exciting and fun. Hopefully I’m helping advance the career of the colleague here who had never thought about this kind of work. Hopefully I’m demonstrating utility to my department. Hopefully they’ll see the value of academic work through this kind of minor success. And hopefully the other paper will get picked up on the next submission. And after all the failures I’ve had with papers recently, the words: “It is our pleasure to accept…” really hit the spot.