1. Harris, Marilyn MSN, RN, NEA-BC, FAAN

Article Content

Home Healthcare Now (HHN) is a peer-reviewed or refereed professional journal. Editors use the peer-review process before an article is published to make sure the content meets accepted standards of the profession, the publisher, and to ensure the quality of the manuscript. Manuscripts that are written by new or published authors are submitted to the editor for review for possible publication. The editor shares the manuscripts with two or three professionals for review and comment. Given the range of topics included in HHN, the editor needs professionals with expertise in each of the topics addressed to review and critique each manuscript.


The review process includes the following steps:


1. The editor assigns a number to each manuscript before sharing it with a reviewer. The reviews are "blind" so all identifying information such as author name and institution are deleted to eliminate bias. If for some reason, the reviewer believes that the author or institution is known to that individual, it is suggested that this information be disclosed to the editor so the editor can assign someone else to review.


2. The editor sends an invitation to review the manuscript to the reviewer and provides a due date to submit the review. This is usually 2 to 3 weeks.


3. The review consists of several sections. Instructions are included on how to complete each section. The reviewer submits their specific comments, including detailed suggestions for improvement or clarification.


4. The reviewer's responses to specific questions are indicated on a scale of 1 Agree to 5 Disagree or Not Applicable.


5. Several sample-specific questions include:


a. Relevance and interest to home care and hospice clinicians and managers


b. Topic is timely and has new/unique slant


c. Organization/style is clear and logical


d. Was the paper interesting to read?


6. Reviewers are asked to provide two summaries:


a. Summary-Reviewer's Comments to Author. This summary addresses the manuscript's positive point and areas for improvement.


b. Summary-Reviewer's Comment to the Editor. This summary includes recommendations related to publication such as accept, accept with minor revisions, or reject.


7. The number of manuscripts that an individual is asked to review varies based on the number and topic of manuscripts the editor receives, but it is rarely more than one per month.



As a reviewer for HHN, my comments related to areas of improvement to the author are constructive, usually requesting additional information or clarification of specific content. When I read a manuscript that contains information related to home health or hospice care that is new or not familiar to me, I need to have details or resource material to understand the content. I read the manuscript from the perspective of the professional who will also read the article for the first time in print or online.


The review process is a professional volunteer opportunity. The benefit is that you have the opportunity to assist a new or published author to have a manuscript published in a professional journal, and the opportunity to ensure the articles are of interest to practicing home care clinicians and managers. Also, you may earn continuing-education credits for your review by answering two short questions.


I encourage readers to consider this opportunity to become a peer reviewer for articles you read in HHN. Contact Maureen Anthony, Editor, at to let her know of your interest or to request additional information.