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March 1968

The Task of an Editor

Arch Otolaryngol. 1968;87(3):221. doi:10.1001/archotol.1968.00760060223001

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In the Jan 4, 1968, New England Journal of Medicine, Dr. Martin Ware of the British Medical Journal, discusses the task of an editor of a medical journal. Such a journal should fulfill three main functions.

  1. It reports what is new.

  2. It educates by review articles on particular diseases or topics.

  3. It provides a forum for discussion by its "Letters to the Editor" department.

In addition to these three main functions, the editor of a general medical journal must be concerned with ethical standards and with political factors that vitally affect the practice and excellence of clinical medicine. Dr. Ware emphasizes that the time is past when the keen clinician can turn his back on medical politics.

The editor of a specialist journal has an easier task in selecting articles on what is new since his journal is read by a group with similar interests who speak

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