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NIH Public Access Policy

Information and Resources on the NIH Public Access Policy

The NIHMS Submission Process

Diagram of submission process

Before Submitting Your Manuscript to PMC

Depositing a manuscript though NIHMS is a multi-step process that currently takes 2 to 3 weeks to complete. Please know processing times can vary depending on how many submissions are received in a given time frame and how carefully the reviews are read.

Authors can ask the publisher to submit on their behalf. However, occasionally, an author will need to submit or assign a delegate to submit a final peer-reviewed manuscript to PMC via the NIH Manuscript Submission System (NIHMS). Authors who exercise the option to self-submit must retain the right to do so. It is important to verify that the publication will:

  • Allow you to submit the final peer-reviewed manuscript upon acceptance of publication.
  • Allow the final peer-reviewed manuscript to be publicly available no later than 12 months after the date of publication.
  • Review any stipulations the journal requires, such as when the article can be made publicly accessible.This information is usually listed in the publisher's copyright agreement. If this information isn't available or is unclear, seek clarification from the publisher. The OHSU Library can assist you with finding this information and communicating with publishers.

Submission Checklist

Before starting the submission process, ready  the following:

  • Create a NCBI or eRA Commons account
  • Title of the journal and manuscript
  • A final peer-reviewed version of the manuscript (Non-peer-reviewed materials, such as editorials, commentaries, dissertations, and book chapters, are not required to be submitted.)
  • Any supplemental materials and graphics associated with the manuscript
  • Grant numbers or names of PIs (full alphanumeric numbers)
  • Copyright agreement information for following the publisher's requirements
  • Check for an embargo on the article. (Some journals will demand authors set a 6–12 month embargo on the article before it is made available in PubMed Central.)

Directions for Submitting a Manuscript

1. Log into the NIH Manuscript Submission System (link provided below)

2. Choose "Submit New Manuscript". Review the submission overview and choose "Continue."

Image of clicking on Submit New Manuscript button

3. Enter the journal name and article title.

4. Enter the grant support information.

Note: You can add a grant by the grant number or via the grantees first and last name. Repeat this step for all associated grants.

Image of grant support information fields


5. Upload the manuscript files.

  • You should include all files that make up the manuscript. This includes, but is not limited to, the main text, figures, tables, appendices, and supplementary files.

Image of upload files window

6. Designate a Reviewer and Release Delay

                    Image of window to designate a reviewer


  • You must designate a reviewer for the submission.
  • You must also designate a release date for the article to PubMed Central. Choose the publisher's designated embargo period. Refer to the publisher's copyright agreement for this information.
  • Review and select Next


8. Review  the submission statement and select Agree

9. You will be directed to a confirmation page after the submission is finished.

  • If you are the Reviewer, the next step is the NIHMS Conversion, where the deposited manuscript is formatted for PMC. Usually, this process takes two to three weeks. When the conversion is finished, you will be notified by email.
  • The submission progress graphic will be updated as your manuscript moves through each stage.

        Image of submission progress graphic

For more detailed submission directions please see the instructional resources below.