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COVID-19 and Cardiology Read more

EHJ-ACVC Onwards and Upwards

Prof. Pascal Vranckx, FESC from Belgium is the new Editor in Chief of the European Heart Journal - Acute Cardiovascular Care (EHJ-ACVC) taking over Prof. Christiaan Vrints, FESC.



I feel honored of being chosen to become editor-in-chief of the European Heart Journal - Acute Cardiovascular Care Medicine (EHJ-ACVC). I realise that I am going to pilot an Association for Acute CardioVascular Care (ACVC) super engine along the acute cardiovascular care highway that plunges through the medical publishing galaxy.

The ACVC has grown in size, scientific diversity, and cultural wealth. So must the EHJ-ACVC. The numbers of accessed and downloaded articles need to increase further, as do the citations. EHJ-ACVC needs to compete on impact factor in the intensive care arena.

The EHJ-ACVC ambition is to best represent our community and to foster and disseminate our research. Despite being the official journal of the ACVC, the EHJ-ACVC indisputably needs to become truly global.

Over the last decade the EHJ-ACVC profoundly improved its profile and metrics. However, it has not yet fulfilled 50% of its potential.

The journal must therefore continue onwards and upwards. Our success can only be built on a foundation of brilliant authors striving to address relevant clinical questions by applying appropriate methods, skilled reviewers intent on guiding authors towards improving their work, and gifted editors dedicating their valuable time to share their hard-earned wisdom.

Quality editors attract quality papers!
One obvious area for improvement is identification of the best work among the many excellent submissions via initial manuscript selection, peer review, and internal discussion.

Another more innovative task would consist in offering editing and rewriting of accepted manuscripts by professionals with expertise in science, English language, and EHJ-ACVC style. 

This journal needs professional medical writers and editors who thoroughly revise all papers before they are released in print and online. We target substance and form!

Speed of the review and publication process should become our hallmark for all articles, not only those designated for the 10-day profile submissions.

Decisions are needed within three days when manuscripts are not sent out for review, within three weeks overall for 85% of submissions and within seven days on average for 10-day profile submissions. We will ask for extraordinary efforts by editors and reviewers to shorten the submission turnover time.

Medical journals are often perceived as working behind closed doors to apply enigmatic procedures they have no wish to disclose. The editor-in-chief is thus seen as holding the keys to the mystery of how to get published. This should be different for the EHJ-ACVC, the goals developed by the editorial board must be broadcast clearly and regularly to ensure a harmonious channeling of energies.

The editorial line defined in the last few years by the Editorial Board will be refined, but the principles in place will remain. As indicated, the journal should breath the ACVC, and reflect current and future trends in the field of intensive and acute cardiovascular care.

The EHJ-ACVC aims for high-quality, original papers which include critically ill cardiovascular patients with clear messages for all physicians working in the field. Manuscripts providing new findings from large interventional studies can still be submitted as 10-day profile publications, allowing important data to be rapidly available in the public domain.

The methodology and the content of original articles, review articles, systematic reviews, and meta-analyses will be evaluated closely for application of high-level methodological standards. The EHJ-ACVC will require authors to fulfill the appropriate Equator (Enhancing the QUAlity and Transparency Of health Research) network checklist and to respect the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) requirements.

The journal will remain a forum for controversial issues, presenting different opinions from experts. Moreover, it will live up with its ambition be an educational resource for the newer generations, having some review articles, what’s new, educational pieces, and images. For images, we intend to expand the section to now include short pieces with an attached video. We will also be starting to accept short research letters, a forum for communicating early results, proofs of concept, or interesting data on small cohorts. Such contributions are increasingly published and appreciated.

Stay tuned! The EHJ-ACVC will keep its tradition of having thematic issues;
The changeover is not only for the Editor-in-Chief.

Some of the esteemed editors will leave the board as their mandate has ended. Thanks to all of them for helping the journal to become what it is now, and I’m sure to have their support also for the future!

New editors will enter the board over the next months. The incoming editors will increase diversity, covering different sub-specialties, geographic provenience, and heterogenous backgrounds. Keep following us and stay posted!

The team will include:

  •  Up to two deputy Editors
  •  Up to 6 associated Editors
  •  A statistics editor
  •  Two guest editors
  •  A team of junior editors who will focus on the new generations’ needs and in developing new social media strategies. “Visual abstracts” will become available for most of the original articles and will be part of our communication.

Before concluding this editorial, a great and warm thanks to Christiaan Vrints.

For sure, the actual EHJ-ACVC is the result of thousands of hours of his work.