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Aims and scope

Human Resources for Health welcomes manuscripts on all aspects of the planning, education, management and governance of human resources for health – particularly those of international relevance and global reach.

Human Resources for Health aims to support and shape the growing focus on health workforce policy, profile, planning, and performance, and on its contributions to improved health care effectiveness and population health, equity, access, social inclusion, and economic growth.

Human Resources for Health encourages debate and analysis on the health workforce aspects of health sector reform, health service funding and structures, regulation, technology, equity, and access. It contributes to the global evidence base by disseminating research and analysis on: health workforce policy and governance; health labour markets; the training, education and development of the workforce; health workforce practice and management; health workforce mobility and migration; job satisfaction, motivations, and career patterns; skill mix, performance and outcomes; and development of knowledge tools and implementation mechanisms, nationally and internationally. The journal encourages collaboration with colleagues in the locations where the research is conducted, and expects their inclusion as co-authors when they fulfill all authorship criteria.

Human Resources for Health is multi-disciplinary in focus. Effective development, deployment and evaluation of the health workforce are complex processes that require cross-disciplinary collaboration, intersectoral co-ordination, and sound theoretical concepts, in areas such as: labour market analyses; planning; evaluation of programmes; economic evaluation; political and policy analysis; demographics and statistics; gender and diversity studies; migration studies; technological innovation; and methods of improving motivation and productivity. Please note that single intervention focused studies, which are relatively exploratory, small scale and/or descriptive, and which have no clear international context or relevance are unlikely to be sent for peer review or accepted for publication. There is no other international journal in which this analytical and policy oriented agenda can be debated and disseminated to the broader community of human resources for health analysts, academics, practitioners and policy makers. In aiming to have global reach and resonance, and policy impact, Human Resources for Health welcomes articles examining health workforce issues, from all disciplines, and all countries, at all income levels

Why publish your article in Human Resources for Health?

  • Published in collaboration with the World Health Organization.
  • We encourage debate on health sector reforms and their link with human resources issues, and we embrace a global perspective encompassing low, middle, and high-income countries.
  • With more than 1,750,000 article accesses in 2022, we provide a highly visible platform for your research.
  • Open access publication ensures that your article can be easily discovered, accessed, used, and shared, maximising your impact and acting as a springboard for further discovery.

Open access

All articles published by Human Resources for Health are made freely and permanently accessible online immediately upon publication, without subscription charges or registration barriers. Further information about open access can be found here.

As authors of articles published in Human Resources for Health you are the copyright holders of your article and have granted to any third party, in advance and in perpetuity, the right to use, reproduce or disseminate your article, according to the BMC license agreement.

For those of you who are US government employees or are prevented from being copyright holders for similar reasons, BMC can accommodate non-standard copyright lines. Please contact us if further information is needed.

Article processing charges (APC)

Authors who publish open access in Human Resources for Health are required to pay an article processing charge (APC). The APC price will be determined from the date on which the article is accepted for publication.

The current APC, subject to VAT or local taxes where applicable, is: £2290.00/$3190.00/€2590.00

Visit our open access support portal and our Journal Pricing FAQs for further information.

Open access funding

Visit Springer Nature’s open access funding & support services for information about research funders and institutions that provide funding for APCs.

Springer Nature offers agreements that enable institutions to cover open access publishing costs. Learn more about our open access agreements to check your eligibility and discover whether this journal is included.

Springer Nature offers APC waivers and discounts for articles published in our fully open access journals whose corresponding authors are based in the world’s lowest income countries (see our APC waivers and discounts policy for further information). Requests for APC waivers and discounts from other authors will be considered on a case-by-case basis, and may be granted in cases of financial need (see our open access policies for journals for more information). All applications for discretionary APC waivers and discounts should be made at the point of manuscript submission; requests made during the review process or after acceptance are unable to be considered.

Indexing services

All articles published in Human Resources for Health are included in:

  • Cinahl
  • Citebase
  • Current contents
  • DOAJ
  • Journal Citation Reports/ Social Sciences Edition
  • Medscape
  • OAIster
  • PubMed
  • PubMed Central
  • SCImago
  • Scopus
  • Social Sciences Citation Index
  • Zetoc

The full text of all articles is deposited in digital archives around the world to guarantee long-term digital preservation. You can also access all articles published by BioMed Central on SpringerLink.

Peer-review policy

Peer-review is the system used to assess the quality of a manuscript before it is published. Independent researchers in the relevant research area assess submitted manuscripts for originality, validity and significance to help editors determine whether the manuscript should be published in their journal. You can read more about the peer-review process here.

Human Resources for Health operates an open peer-review system, where the reviewers' names are included on the peer-review reports. In addition, if the article is published, the named reports are published online alongside the article as part of a 'pre-publication history'.

Submitted manuscripts are generally reviewed by at least two external experts, where the reviewers disagree or further detail is required, additional reviews may be obtained. The Editor-in-Chief works with the Deputy and Associate Editors to make the final decision regarding acceptance or rejection of manuscripts.

All articles published in Human Resources for Health have a maximum word limit of 4,000 words regardless of article type, which excludes text in tables, figures and additional files. Authors are encouraged to avoid repeating unnecessarily information in the main article if it is present in any tables or figures. Authors of manuscripts needing longer word limits should send a pre-submission enquiry explaining this and obtain the Editor-in-Chief’s approval to submit. Manuscripts may be rejected or returned to the authors for revisions if they exceed the maximum word limit.

Editorial policies

All manuscripts submitted to Human Resources for Health should adhere to BioMed Central's editorial policies.

Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

Citing articles in Human Resources for Health

Articles in Human Resources for Health  should be cited in the same way as articles in a traditional journal. Because articles are not printed, they do not have page numbers; instead, they are given a unique article number.

Article citations follow this format:

Authors: Title. Hum Resour Health [year], [volume number]:[article number].

e.g. Roberts LD, Hassall DG, Winegar DA, Haselden JN, Nicholls AW, Griffin JL: Increased hepatic oxidative metabolism distinguishes the action of Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor delta from Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor gamma in the Ob/Ob mouse. Hum Resour Health 2009, 1:115.

refers to article 115 from Volume 1 of the journal.

Appeals and complaints

Authors who wish to appeal a rejection or make a complaint should follow the procedure outlined in the BMC Editorial Policies.

Benefits of publishing with BMC

High visibility

Human Resources for Health's open access policy allows maximum visibility of articles published in the journal as they are available to a wide, global audience. 

Speed of publication

Human Resources for Health offers a fast publication schedule whilst maintaining rigorous peer review; all articles must be submitted online, and peer review is managed fully electronically (articles are distributed in PDF form, which is automatically generated from the submitted files). Articles will be published with their final citation after acceptance, in both fully browsable web form, and as a formatted PDF.


Online publication in Human Resources for Health gives you the opportunity to publish large datasets, large numbers of color illustrations and moving pictures, to display data in a form that can be read directly by other software packages so as to allow readers to manipulate the data for themselves, and to create all relevant links (for example, to PubMed, to sequence and other databases, and to other articles).

Promotion and press coverage

Articles published in Human Resources for Health are included in article alerts and regular email updates. Some may be highlighted on Human Resources for Health’s pages and on the BMC homepage.

In addition, articles published in Human Resources for Health may be promoted by press releases to the general or scientific press. These activities increase the exposure and number of accesses for articles published in Human Resources for Health. A list of articles recently press-released by journals published by BMC is available here.


As an author of an article published in Human Resources for Health you retain the copyright of your article and you are free to reproduce and disseminate your work (for further details, see the BMC license agreement).

For further information about the advantages of publishing in a journal from BMC, please click here.