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NIH Seeks Comments on Public Access Policy

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) - The National Institutes of Health is asking for public comments on its planned implementation of a new policy that would require its grantees to publish the results of their studies in its public access forum.
 
The NIH’s Public Access Policy became law at the end of 2007 when President George W. Bush signed the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2008, which funded a number of the largest federal agencies for the year.
 
The NIH said Friday it will take public comments about the policy starting today through May 31, and it plans to publish results and analysis from the comment period on September, 30. Interested parties including grantees, publishers, libraries, medical practitioners, patients and others, can leave their comments on the NIH’s website here.
 
The law requires that all NIH funded investigators must submit or have submitted for them electronic versions of their final, peer-reviewed manuscripts on acceptance for publication to the National Library of Medicine’s PubMed Central database within twelve months of publication.
 
The NIH noted in its request for information today that some parties have concerns about the policy’s impact on copyright practices and about the length of time before manuscripts are made publicly available. Others have had suggestions about how the Public Access training materials, according to NIH, and have developed compliance strategies that may benefit others.
 
The NIH said it is seeking recommendations for alternative implementation approaches to those already reflected in the NIH policy, recommendations for monitoring and ensuring compliance, and recommendations for the type of information the NIH could share that would be helpful for interested communities.
 
More information about the NIH Public Access Policy can be found here.