What is the purpose of the Patients Included journal charter?

The Patients Included journal charter provides journal publishers with a means of demonstrating a title’s commitment to incorporating the experience of patients as experts in living with their condition by ensuring that patients are neither excluded from nor exploited by the publication.

How can a journal achieve Patients Included status?

Patients Included status is self-assessed. A journal successfully meeting all four of the charter’s clauses may accredit itself as a Patients Included publication.

Patients Included journal charter clauses:

  1. At least two patients[1] sit on the editorial board[2] of the journal.
  2. Patients routinely publish editorials, reviews, or research articles in the journal as authors[3].
  3. Patients serve as peer reviewers of submissions to the journal.
  4. The journal is an open access[4] publication, with no barriers to access full text content.

How can a journal promote its Patients Included status?

A journal fulfilling all four of the charter’s clauses may display the trademarked Patients Included logo[5]  within its publication, on its website, and in any promotional materials that it may produce. The self-accrediting title may also feature a link to the journals charter’s home page. Journals should be able to provide evidence in support of their Patients Included status to the public[6].

Who are the authors of the Patients Included journal charter?

The Patients Included journal charter was written by members of the public during March 2016.

What can I do to show my support for the Patients Included journal charter?

Patients Included journal charter supporters may become signatories to the charter by adding their name to the form below.


Feedback concerning the Patients Included journal charter

Contributions to ongoing discussion concerning the #PatientsIncluded journal charter on Twitter are invited, as is all feedback concerning compliant and non-compliant publications. Instances where titles are deemed to have either exceeded or breached the charter’s clauses are particularly welcome.


  1. An overarching term inclusive of individuals with personal experience of a health issue as well as their families, friends, and informal caregivers (Source).
  2. A group of people controlling the tone and direction taken by a publication’s editorial policy.
  3. The journal explicitly invites contributions from patients.
  4. As defined by the Budapest Open Access Initiative (Source).
  5. Patients Included is a trademark of the REshape & Innovation Center.
  6. It is suggested this information be displayed prominently on the publication’s website.

v.1.0 April 2016