Federal Practitioner welcomes submission of manuscripts on subjects pertinent to physicians, clinical pharmacists, physician assistants, advanced practice nurses, and medical center administrators currently working within the VA, the DoD, IHS, and the PHS. Article types include Original Research, Commentary, Clinical Review, Program Profile, and Case in Point and What’s Your Diagnosis. Manuscript submissions will be considered for publication only if the author has certified that the work is original, has not been published previously, and is not under consideration for publication elsewhere. 

All manuscripts are subject to an editorial check prior to peer review for relevance, originality, significance, and adherence to submission guidelines and will not be sent to peer review if they do not meet all those standards. Final decisions are at the discretion of the Editor.

Federal Practitioner uses Editorial Manager, an online manuscript submission and review system. All manuscripts must be submitted through this system. All manuscripts must be read by at least 2 peer reviewers to be accepted for publication.


Federal Practitioner uses a straightforward style that balances scholarly discourse with a reader-friendly, conversational tone. Avoid excessive jargon and define all abbreviations. Many Federal Practitioner readers are primary care practitioners so language specific to a medical specialty should be avoided. Be concise and use the active voice when possible.

Federal Practitioner’s style is based on that established by the American Medical Association with some modifications. When preparing your manuscript, therefore, it may be helpful to consult the 11th edition of the AMA Manual of Style (2020). If you have additional questions, email fedprac@mdedge.com.


Manuscripts must be submitted as word documents (.docx).

The manuscript should contain no author names anywhere in the document, including headers. Authors should be listed on a separate cover page. Tables and figures should be submitted as separate files. Photos should be 300 dpi hi-res (.jpg, .gif, etc); figures (line graphs, scatterplots, bar graphs, etc) and tables should be submitted in a format that can be edited (eg, .docx, .pptx); figure plot point data also must be supplied under the figure to ensure proper placement of data.

Word count (excluding abstract, references, and tables), abstract, keywords, and manuscript classifications are all required for submission. Before submission, review your manuscript for grammar, readability, and accuracy.

All accepted articles will appear online (www.mdedge.com/fedprac) and in PubMed Central, but only selected articles may appear in print issues. Some tables, figures, and appendices may appear only online, but citations as to their appearance will be included in the print version.


Original Research

An Original Research article reports the results of randomized controlled, observational, qualitative, retrospective, prospective, case-control, or quality improvement studies.

  • ≤ 4000 words, excluding references

  • Follows a standard organizational structure (structured abstract, background, methods, results, discussion, and conclusions)

  • Authors are expected to adhere to the EQUATOR research guidelines related to their study type

  • A large and representative sample size (typically > 100 patients)

An Original Research manuscript > 4000 words or those with a small sample size should include an explanation of why the article should be considered and will be evaluated by editors and/or the editorial board.


A Commentary offers opinions or personal perspectives on any health care–related topic that is relevant to federal practitioners. Clinicians may discuss key issues in federal practice and/or the authors’ experiences outside the traditional health care setting.

  • ≤ 1800 words, excluding references

  • No more than 15 references

  • No more than 2 tables, figures, appendices

A Commentary > 1800 words articles should include an explanation of why the article should be considered at that length and will be evaluated by editors and/or the editorial board. 

Clinical Review

A Clinical Review should address federal health care priority areas and provide an evidence synthesis that describes how the practice should affect practice or future research. Federal Practitioner accepts narrative reviews, systematic reviews, meta-analyses, and scoping reviews.

  • ≤ 4000 words, excluding references

  • 4 or fewer tables or figures

  • < 100 references

  • Authors are expected to adhere to the EQUATOR research guidelines related to their review type

Clinical Reviews > 4000 words should include an explanation of why the article should be considered at that length and will be evaluated by editors and/or the editorial board. 

Program Profiles

Federal Practitioner welcomes articles that describe innovative programs established at federal health care facilities, including quality improvement initiatives. These articles should describe the health care need, the program, and can include some data (if any) but should be focused on the program description and not the data presentation.

  • ≤ 3000 words, excluding references

  • 25 or fewer references

  • 3 or fewer tables or figures

  • Should include an abstract, background, and conclusions

A Program Profile > 3000 words should include an explanation of why the article should be considered at that length and will be evaluated by editors and/or the editorial board. 

Case Reports

Case Reports should be original and offer a unique contribution to the literature. Case Reports on topics that are already well reported in the literature may not proceed to peer review. Federal Practitioner Case Reports follow 1 of 2 formats:

Case in Point is a standard case report and discussion. It begins with a short introduction that raises the important issues that will be illustrated in the case, followed by a detailed case presentation that usually includes a description of the patient’s initial presentation and examination, relevant history, diagnosis, treatment, and outcome. Images (such as X-rays, computed tomography or magnetic resonance imaging scans, histologic slides, or patient photographs) are recommended when available to underscore key points. The discussion that follows the case expands on issues of diagnosis, treatment, and prevention as appropriate, citing recent, relevant medical literature.

  • ≤ 2500 words, excluding references

  • Includes an abstract with headings (background, case presentation, and conclusions) 

  • Follows a standard organizational structure (abstract, background, case presentation, discussion, conclusions)

  • Follows CARE guidelines

A Case in Point > 2500 words should include an explanation of why the article should be considered at that length and will be evaluated by editors and/or the editorial board.

What’s Your Diagnosis? highlights challenging or unusual diagnoses. It starts by discussing the patient’s initial presentation and examination, relevant history, and results of any tests required to make the diagnosis. It then poses the question, “What’s Your Diagnosis?” This is followed by a section in which the authors detail the actual diagnosis, treatment, and outcome. A short discussion follows, which explains the key issues involved in making this diagnosis and provides tips for clinicians confronted with similar cases.

  • < 1500 words, excluding references

  • Follows CARE guidelines

A What’s Your Diagnosis? > 1500 words should include an explanation of why the article should be considered at that length and will be evaluated by editors and/or the editorial board. 


Tables and figures should be submitted separately. Photos should be high-resolution files with a minimum resolution of 300 dpi. Do not embed photos, tables, and figures into the word document or submit them as a .pdf. Provide plot point data for graphs. Tables and figures (photographs, line drawings, and graphs) should be cited parenthetically in the manuscript text, using Arabic numerals (ie, Figure 1, Table 2, etc). Each should be cited only once. Provide descriptive titles, legends, or captions for each table and figure as appropriate. Figure captions may be included within the manuscript document, following the reference list.

If any elements have been adapted or reproduced from a copyrighted source, the authors must acknowledge this fact upon submission and within the manuscript (in the appropriate table footnotes or figure captions). Authors are responsible for obtaining and providing Federal Practitioner with written documentation of permission for usage (in print and online) prior to publication.


Federal Practitioner requests authors include explicit statements regarding conflict of interest, human and animal rights, and informed written consent in order to abide by the Federal Practitioner editorial policies. The following headings should be included following the conclusion of the main manuscript text and before the References:


Please acknowledge anyone who contributed toward the article who does not meet the criteria for authorship. If you do not have any, you may state “not applicable” in this section.

Author affiliations

Authors should be listed here and their academic affiliations as well as the name of their primary place of work. At least 1 author should have a federal affiliation. If no authors have a current federal and/or governmental affiliation, the authors must explain the relevance to the Federal Practitioner audience.

Author disclosures

All authors must complete a conflict of interest form, which must be submitted before the article can be published. Any notable personal or financial conflict of interests must be declared here. Please refer to the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICJME) guidelines for what may constitute a conflict of interest.

All sources of funding also should be reported. If the funding body played a role in the design of the study, or the collection and analysis of data, then this also should be declared in this section.

Ethics and consent

All authors are expected to adhere to the ethical principles for medical research involving human and animal subjects outlined in the World Medical Association’s Declaration of Helsinki as well as to all relevant guidelines from the institution in which the research was conducted. Authors must include a statement here revealing the pertinent details of ethics approval or exemption, including the full name of the institutional review board (IRB) and its institutional affiliation. Authors should also indicate whether a Research and Development committee provided approval and/or exemption. In cases where formal ethics approval is not required according to local guidelines or regulations, authors must include a reference to these.

Studies involving the publication of potentially identifying information, such as Case Reports, require written informed consent for publication. This must be stated in this section, if applicable. Federal Practitioner reserves the right to reject any Case Report without signed informed consent, even in the absence of identifying information in accordance with CARE guidelines. Patient information must be de-identified and informed consent obtained prior to submitting the case report to Federal Practitioner. Please note editorial staff may request a copy of the signed statement of informed consent.


Use references to document and acknowledge source information. Reference all statistics and data presented from published studies. Use sound academic judgment about referencing other material. Whenever possible, cite original and latest published studies. References to websites are acceptable but not preferred as the websites often are taken down.

Source documents should be listed at the end of the manuscript in accordance with AMA style for references. They should be numbered to correspond with the order in which they are cited in the text. If a reference is cited more than once in the text, it should appear in the reference list only once, numbered in accordance with its first citation. Please do not use your word processing program’s footnote or endnote functions for references. These functions are incompatible with our software.

References should include the following information: names of all authors, complete title of article cited or book chapter, name of journal or book, the year of publication, volume and issue numbers, and inclusive page numbers of the article or chapter cited. Use of secondary sources is discouraged. Some examples follow:


1. McDonald EG, Milligan J, Frenette C, Lee TC. Continuous proton pump inhibitor therapy and the associated risk of recurrent Clostridium difficile infection. JAMA Intern Med. 2015;175(5):784-791. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2015.42

2. Meza O, Kirby KA, Williams B, Yaffe K, Byers AL, Barnes DE. Prisoner of war status, posttraumatic stress disorder, and dementia in older veterans. Alzheimers Dement. 2014;10(3)(suppl):S236-S241. doi:10.1016/j.jalz.2014.04.004


3. Rosenquist RW, Vrooman MD. Chronic pain management. In: Butterworth JF, Mackey DC, Wasnick JD, eds. Morgan & Mikhail’s Clinical Anesthesiology. 5th ed. McGraw-Hill; 2013:chap 47.

4. Kelly L, Caplan G. Comprehensive geriatric assessment. In: Caplan G, ed. Geriatric Medicine: An Introduction. IP Communications; 2014:42-54.

Internet Citations

5. Oliva EM. Opioid overdose education and naloxone distribution (OEND): preventing and responding to an opioid overdose. US Department of Veterans Affairs. Published September 2, 2014. Accessed January 7, 2015. www.hsrd.research.va.gov/for_researchers/cyber_seminars/archives/video_archive.cfm

6. Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA). IDSA practice guidelines: antimicrobial agent use. Updated May 7, 2015. Accessed January 7, 2016. www.idsociety.org/Antimicrobial_Agents

Government Documents

7. US Department of Veterans Affairs, VA Office of Inspector General. Veterans Health Administration interim report: review of patient wait times, scheduling practices, and alleged patient deaths at the Phoenix Health Care System. Published May 28, 2014. Accessed January 7, 2015. www.va.gov/oig/pubs/VAOIG-14-02603-178.pdf


To submit a manuscript, go to the Federal Practitioner Editorial Manager website (http://www.editorialmanager.com/fedprac). If you have not already done so, you must register for the site. (Note: If you have been registered for the site as a reviewer, you do not need to register again as an author. All reviewers can log in as an author should they choose to do so.) After you have registered, you may log in as an author and begin the submission process.

The submission process consists of several steps, which vary depending on the type of manuscript you are submitting. All submissions require you to enter a title, enter keywords, select classifications (subject areas discussed in the manuscript), which help match the submission with a peer reviewer's classifications, and answer several questions about the submission. Attach the following submission components:

1. Cover page;

2. Manuscript (with no author information), tables and figures; and

3. All authors must complete the following forms and include them in the Editorial Manager submission using Attach Files page that appears during manuscript submission

4. If your article is a Case Report, submit a statement of confirmation of informed consent from the patient within the Declarations section of the manuscript.

The cover page should include the title of the manuscript, a byline listing all individuals and degrees who have served in authorship roles for the manuscript, and brief biographical information on the authors (professional and academic affiliations). For criteria defining authorship roles, consult the 11th edition of the AMA Manual of Style (2020) or the ICMJE Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals: Writing and Editing for Biomedical Publication. In the byline, include each author's full name, highest relevant degrees and certifications, and military rank (when applicable). Do not include fellowships. It is also helpful to identify, on the cover page, which author will be serving as the corresponding author.

Manuscript submissions also require that an abstract is entered as part of the submission process. This should be typed (or copied and pasted) into the text box provided.

Once you have submitted a manuscript through the Editorial Manager system, you may check on its status at any time by logging in as an author.


All manuscripts submitted to Federal Practitioner for consideration are reviewed by an internal team for pre–peer review checks. Should a manuscript proceed to peer review, it will be reviewed by at least 2 members of our peer review committee. Peer reviews are conducted in a double-blind fashion, and the reviewers are asked to comment on the manuscript’s importance, accuracy, relevance, clarity, timeliness, balance, and reference citation. To properly match a peer reviewer with your submission content, enter classifications in the classification dropdown box. Final decisions on peer-reviewed manuscripts are made by the Editor-in-Chief (or, in the event of a potential conflict of interest, a designated surrogate from the Editorial Advisory Association).

Manuscripts that are accepted for publication in Federal Practitioner undergo editing for length, clarity, and journal style. Some material may be reworded or reordered to improve readability and eliminate redundancy, but we make every effort to retain the authors’ voice and meaning. Edited manuscripts are returned to the corresponding author for approval prior to publication.

If you have any questions about the preparation or submission of your manuscript, wish to propose a specific topic, or have any other feedback, email us at fedprac@mdedge.com.