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].


  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.

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.

v.1.0 April 2016