IADPO Member Organization Contribution

Patient Associate Editors at the British Journal of Dermatology

Patient engagement or patient participation is an important issue. I believe the motto is: “Nothing about us without us.” In his June 2019 editorial for the British Journal of Dermatology (BJD), Professor Alex Anstey gave an overview of patient engagement and how this could be incorporated at the BJD. Time for an update, and it is good news!

Since then, James Burton, representing the Hidradenitis Suppurativa Trust (United Kingdom), and I have been appointed as the two Patient Associate Editors at the BJD, being equal members of the editorial team. As a team, we are trying to shape patient engagement at the BJD by embedding the patient perspective and create and strengthen relations with patients and patients’ organizations.

Research news

The BJD is one of the most esteemed medical journals in Dermatology. Many of its articles come with a plain-language summary (PLS) that contains the essence of these articles. Usually, this means around 15 PLSs per issue. They are all freely accessible on the BJD-site in English and also available in Chinese (Mandarin).

We are now in the process of creating a new web-resource for PLSs on the patient hub website of the British Association of Dermatologists. New features will include filters per disease area or topic and a search function. Furthermore, a PLS mailing list has been set up, and already tweets are sent out with the hashtag #BJDPLS. This way patients and patients’ organizations can keep up to date with the latest research, from a trusted source.

Patient perspectives

We also focus on the patient perspective in the BJD itself, as patient engagement is not a one-way street. Therefore, we very much welcome thought-provoking articles from a patient perspective. Please check the amended author guidelines on the perspective articles in the Correspondence section.

This is all good news, I think. Although it is still work in progress, it is also very exciting. In the meantime, if you have any questions or any thoughts you might want to share, please do not hesitate to contact me.

gridd V1Bernd Arents
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Dutch Association for People with Atopic Eczema, The Netherlands