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Wellcome Open Research – New Platform for Open Access Publishing

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Wellcome Open Research


Wellcome Open Research is an open research publishing platform for Wellcome funded researchers that aims to remove the barriers to publication and ensure research findings are quickly discoverable. The platform uses an author-driven approach where authors and their collaborators can rapidly publish any results, from traditional narrative-based articles to incremental findings, methods, protocols, software tools, datasets and negative/null results.


The platform uses a post-publication peer review model, where articles are published first (after it has been checked by an in-house editorial team). Once the authors have finalized the manuscript, the article (with its associated source data) is published within a week, enabling immediate viewing and citation. Expert referees are selected and invited, and their reports and names are published alongside the article, together with the authors' responses and comments from registered users. As reviews come in authors are encouraged to publish revised versions of their article. All versions of an article are linked and independently citable. Articles that pass peer review are then indexed in external databases such as PubMed, Scopus and Google Scholar.

Remarks from the Director Professor Stephen Gordon

“This week we published our first article on the platform that describes the framework for Controlled Human Infection Model (CHIM) studies in Malawi:  My reflection on this process was that it was very fast (a week to publication from submission) and so it offers groups with a publication backlog a real chance to catch up.  Also, publication is critical in grant production – this high-speed method allows your published review to be cited in your grant, even if both are worked up at the same time. 


Finally, there are certain papers that struggle – post-publication review allows you to address those difficult reviewers without the delay and potential career damage.  So, all in all, I strongly encourage you to publish in this way. Another feature of Wellcome Open Research is the opportunity to create dedicated areas on the platform for Wellcome Centres and Institutions called Gateways.  The only example of a Gateway that is currently being used effectively can be seen through the KEMRI centre in Kilifi,  Kenya: The plan here at MLW is to create our own Gateway, and this will happen when collectively there are five articles from MLW published on the platform. So, if you are interested in publishing some of your research please do consider Wellcome Open Research.


 Publication in a Gateway will increase the chance that non-specialists will see your work, and that the wider research community will more fully understand the breadth of MLW’s work.  For the Gateway to be effective, we would like at least one paper from every research group in the very near future.  I look forward to seeing how this grows."


MLW hosts workshop on “Doing the right thing: A workshop on Research Integrity and Publication Ethics”

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INTOn 7 June 2017, 19 MLW research staff and students attended a half-day workshop on Research Integrity and Publication Ethics, by external facilitators Dr. Liz Wager and Anke Rohwer. The workshop explored research integrity around publication including plagiarism, redundant publications, and competing interests around authorship such as guest authorships, by discussing practical scenarios.

Participants completed a survey ahead of the workshop that asked their opinion on fictional scenarios around research integrity concepts. The groups’ survey responses were then compared to those from nearly 200 Cochrane researchers during the workshop, and used to discuss research integrity concepts, and understand how they could handle such situations.

Participants found the workshop valuable. Malaria Group Research Intern Alinane Munyenyembe said, “On my part, I was surprised to learn that a lot of protocol objectives are either changed or omitted in publications after the study is completed. I want to make sure to follow my protocol strictly in the future and to be honest in my publications.”

“Through this workshop, I have gained an awareness of research integrity issues such as plagiarism, conflicts of interest and how researchers must commit to high quality research. I would recommend the workshop to other researchers,” said Chimwemwe Phiri, Behavior and Health Group Research Associate.

As part of the extension of the Core training programme, MLW aims to offer more similar workshops and short course opportunities in the future. So join the next research integrity workshop to learn and enhance your research ethics skills.


ASPIRE project donates emergency medical equipment and supplies to 11 health centres in Blantyre and Chikhwawa districts

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Equipment Donation StoryIn an effort to reduce child mortality, Achieving Sustainable Primary ImProvement and Engagement in Health (ASPIRE) project at Malawi Liverpool Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Programme (MLW) has donated emergency medical equipment and supplies worth K11 million to 11 health centres in Blantyre and Chikhwawa district where the project is implementing its interventions.


Speaking at the function which took place at Ndirande Health Centre, the project coordinator, Mtisunge Gondwe said that the project saw the gap in terms of emergency treatment at the facilities.


“Looking at the gap which was there when a child has presented with emergency signs, there was insufficient emergency equipment and supplies to assist the children. The majority of sick children were referred to QECH in an unstable condition. As a consequence, some children could die on the way while others would reach Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital (QECH) in a worse condition. With the equipment and supplies, children presenting with emergency signs will be stabilized at the health centre whilst waiting for an ambulance to pick them to the referring facility, QECH. Since the start of the project in 2012, the time which patients wait to be seen by a medical practitioner has drastically been reduced. “Patients who are critically ill are able to see a doctor in less than 30 minutes and if they have priority signs, they are able to see a doctor within an hour,” she said.


In expressing joy and gratitude to what the project has done, Blantyre District Health Officer, Dr Medson Matchaya said that the equipment has come at the right time considering the challenges that exist in addressing emergency cases.


“In medicine, there is a terminology called golden hour, this is the time when the parent has recognized some signs and symptoms of illness in the child to the time the child is seen by a doctor. This period of time is very critical as it determines the outcome of the condition of the child. So with these valuable equipment, this golden hour will tremendously improve as all the critically ill children will be assisted in time since all emergency equipment are available at the facility.”


The Chipatala robot project (so named after the traffic lights system) is being implemented in 8 health centres of Blantyre and 2 health centres and 1 district hospital in Chikhwawa and aims at ensuring that sick children are categorized according to the severity of their illness instead of being assisted on a first come first seen basis. It targets children between the ages of 0-14 years presenting at facilities.


Among the items that have been donated to the health centres include; oxygen concentrators, suction machines, pulse oximeters, nebulizer machines, thermometers, glucometers, feeding tubes, oxygen delivering tubes, drug trolleys and weighing scales. All these are vital and standard in ensuring that health workers can handle a patient whose condition deteriorates.