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J Korean Soc Matern Child Health > Volume 28(1); 2024 > Article
Hwang: The Development of the Journal of Korean Maternal and Child Health
The Journal of the Korean Society of Maternal and Child Health (JKSMCH, ISSN 1226-4562, and eISSN 2384-440X), the official Journal of the Korean Society of Maternal and Child Health (KSMCH), was launched in 1997. It was initially published twice a year until 2015, and from 2016-2028, it increased its frequency to 3 times a year. Since 2019, it has been published quarterly and is indexed on KoreaMed, KoMCI, KoreaMed Synapse, Korea Citation Index (KCI), eNEST, and Google Scholar.
In particular, unlike other journals in the field of maternal and child health in Korea, JKSMCH is Korean and a multidisciplinary journal that encompasses various fields, including obstetrics, pediatrics, preventive medicine, and nursing. Its primary readership includes not only doctors and nurses but also public health researchers and government policymakers. Due to these features, the journal was ranked 40th out of 334 in the 2021 KCI by the National Research Foundation of Korea, with an impact factor of 0.87.
However, in recent years, JKSMCH has experienced stagnation in the number of articles submitted, and the submitted articles are concentrated in obstetrics and nursing. Therefore, there is an urgent need to develop alternatives for the quantitative and qualitative growth of the journal.
To enhance the quality of JKSMCH, the editorial board has diversified the types of submissions, including case reports and editorials. The electronic submission system has also been reorganized for the convenience of authors. In addition, to broaden submissions, the journal's name, previously centered on the society's name, was changed to the Journal of Korean Maternal and Child Health (JKMCH) to clearly reflect the purpose of the journal. The cover design was also modified to emphasize the identity of the journal.
I would also like to make suggestions for the development of this journal.

Globalization of JKMCH With Regional Characteristics

The KSMCH leadership and the editorial board of JKMCH emphasize the importance of expanding the number of submissions while preserving the identity of improving maternal and child health in South Korea.
To achieve this goal, it is crucial to enhance JKMCH's reputation and make the submission system more author-friendly. Simultaneously, efforts should be made to ensure that JKMCH remains accessible to Korean readers interested in maternal and child health.
There was a concern that transitioning to an all-English journal might compromise the journal's identity by limiting access to Korean readers.
Fortunately, PubMed Central (PMC) has recently allowed non-English journals based on regional characteristics. As an example, the Journal of the Korean Academy of Nursing, an official journal of the Korean Academy of Nursing, was listed in PMC, even though its language is Korean.
JKMCH should also try to be listed in PMC in Korean to maintain the identity of the journal and improve the quality of the journal

Author-Friendly System to Improve the Quality of JKMCH

A reputable journal continuously publishes high-quality papers and attracts a large readership to increase its influence. To maintain a positive impact, it is essential to publish a minimum of 40 articles annually. Unfortunately, the number of articles published in JKMCH has stagnated, hovering around the mid-30s. This stagnation is attributed to decreasing academic demand for maternal and child health in Korea due to a declining birth rate and a reduction in the number of graduate students and researchers in this field.
To address these challenges, a broadened base of submissions is needed, extending beyond doctors and nurses to fields such as public health research and health economics. Additionally, an author-friendly review system will be established to expedite decision-making and publishing processes.
Finally, JKMCH will need to introduce new article types, including review articles and case reports, to diversify its content.
In conclusion, since its inception 27 years ago alongside the KSMCH, the JKMCH has undergone significant development, driven by research and policy proposals in the realm of maternal and child health. However, recent challenges, including a decline in research activity stemming from the impact of a declining birthrate, a stagnation in the number of published articles, and the contemporary need for internationali-zation, necessitate a transformative approach for the journal. It is our earnest hope that JKMCH will advance through these changes.


The author has nothing to disclose.

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