All good medical journals require editors, authors, and peer reviewers to declare their financial conflicts of interest. But few hold themselves, as organisations, to similar levels of accountability. Last year, BMJ’s executive committee (on which FG sits) decided to declare all revenues received from the drug and device industries.1 To our knowledge, no other major biomedical publisher declares its revenues in this way.
The BMJ is published by a publishing company, BMJ (BMJ Publishing Group), which is wholly owned by the British Medical Association (BMA). BMA grants editorial freedom to the editor of The BMJ.
Table 1⇓ shows our declaration for the 2016 financial year, and the information can also be found online.2 We are declaring a breakdown of revenue from three specific streams: product advertising, commercial sponsorship, and the sale of article reprints. (Our other important revenue streams are subscription income, rights and licensing, classified advertising, and open access fees.) Our declaration shows that in 2016, BMJ (the publishing company as a whole) received 8.7% of its income (£6.76m; €7.6m; $9m) from these three revenue streams combined: £3.72m from product advertising, £1.06m from commercial sponsorship, and £1.98m from reprint sales. For our flagship journal, The BMJ, the figures are 12% (£2.77m) overall, £2.66m, £0, and £120 000, respectively.
Why share this information? Because we have been asked to,3 and because doing so is in line…
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