© Hong Kong Academy of Medicine. CC BY-NC-ND 4.0
Perspective: a new article type for the Hong Kong Medical Journal
Michael G Irwin, MB, ChB, FHKAM (Anaesthesiology)1; Martin CS Wong, MD, MPH2
1 Senior Editor, Hong Kong Medical Journal
2 Editor-in-Chief, Hong Kong Medical Journal
Corresponding authors: Dr Michael G Irwin (mgirwin@hku.hk), Prof Martin CS Wong (wong_martin@cuhk.edu.hk)
 Full paper in PDF
“And those who were seen dancing, were thought to be crazy, by those who could not hear the music.”—Friedrich Nietzsche
The Hong Kong Medical Journal (HKMJ) was first indexed on MEDLINE in 2000 and has developed over the years to now have a Journal Impact Factor of 3.125 (Clarivate, 2022). The HKMJ is an important forum for the dissemination of both local and international medical research and, with the support of the Hong Kong Academy of Medicine and the Hong Kong Medical Association, is freely accessible online with no publication charges. The HKMJ constantly evolves, and the Editorial Board take strategic decisions to keep the content contemporary and interesting for our readers.
Healthcare changes rapidly. New drugs, techniques and guidelines can be bewildering. Perspectives exhibit a new and original viewpoint on available issues, basic concepts, or widespread notions on a particular topic, suggest and encourage a new speculation, or discuss the implications of a newly implemented innovation. Perspectives may focus on common advances and coming directions on a topic, and may include unique information along with personal experience and point of view. Perspectives can be just that or an opinion or commentary. Similar to the Perspective section of the New England Journal of Medicine, this new article type for HKMJ will cover timely and relevant topics in Medicine and Healthcare presented in a brief manner.1 These are scholarly articles which denote a personalised point of view or a new perspective on a specific topic. Perspectives may also be narrative reviews of the literature discussing recent developments in a specific topic or guiding practice for clinicians as our new Perspective article type. Although these articles do not amount to unique research, they can be clinically elucidating and still add value to the scientific literature, encourage discourse, and improve the overall impact of the journal.
Perspective articles mainly constitute an opinion which exhibits the author’s viewpoint on the strengths and weaknesses of a speculation or scientific theory and ought to be constructive criticism backed by evidence intended to promote scientific dialogue that challenges the current state of knowledge in a specific field. The editors will also consider perspective articles discussing timely clinical or health topics, or research studies published elsewhere. The editors request, however, that authors do not principally aim to discuss their own work and try to be balanced in their opinions.
Commentaries can also be considered under this banner but tend to be shorter (≤1200 words) and should draw attention to or critique a previously released article, book, report or guideline, using anecdotal evidence or the author’s personal experience to highlight points of wider relevance to the field.
Perspective articles should be generally <2000 words and usually include one figure or table, and will be peer reviewed.
While editors may invite such articles from reviewers or experts in the field, authors should consider writing a Perspective or Commentary in situations where: the topic is of broad concern to a wider audience or to the scholarly community in general; the author wishes to present opinions and ideas or describe an innovation that has not yet been broadly implemented; or the author wishes to provide an in-depth discussion of a topic or literature review that would be too lengthy for a commentary but does not amount to a systematic review.
Whether you are writing a Perspective detailing an innovation, or providing your opinions or ideas from a particular perspective, decide on the message you wish to express and organise your thoughts logically. Perspectives are still scholarly articles, although they denote a personalised point of view or a new perspective about available research; references, figures and tables should be used sparingly to support key facts. A number of journals have adopted similar article types and we feel that Perspectives is an innovation that will prove very popular with readers. Guidelines on format and presentation are now available in our Guide for Authors (https://www.hkamedtrack.org/hkmj/guide_for_author). What are you waiting for?
Author contributions
The author contributed to the editorial, approved the final version for publication, and takes responsibility for its accuracy and integrity.
Conflicts of interest
The author has declared no conflict of interest.
1. Article types. The New England Journal of Medicine. Available from: https://www.nejm.org/author-center/article-types. Accessed 13 Jan 2023.