Help for visitors

The BMJ website underwent some design changes in November 2011. There were also some changes to access controls in January 2012. The aim of this page is to answer any questions you may have about the site, and how the changes may affect you.

If you can't find the answer to your question below, please contact our customer services team, either by telephone on +44 (0) 20 7383 6270 or via this online form.

Why did change in November 2011?

The last redesign happened in early 2007. Since then we’ve launched lots of new features and sections, and it was getting more difficult to promote them all with the old design. The new site is built using Drupal software, which will give us greater flexibility to innovate in the future.

Has the navigation changed? Are there any new sections?

We kept the top navigation the same (research, education, news, comment). We’ve renamed the video section Multimedia, and it now includes our weekly podcasts as well. This page has a black background so the films show in sharper contrast. The About BMJ section used to be on the top navigation, but the information it contains (links to our policies, editorial team member pages, advice for authors, etc). is now linked from a panel at the bottom of every page, the “footer.”

The other section we’ve renamed is Topics, which are now called Specialties. These include links to speciality portals, our clinical and non-clinical collection pages, and our article series.

Has the search changed?

Yes, we have made some slight changes. We’ve improved the quick search so you can now find podcasts, rapid responses, and pages from the About BMJ section. These include advice for authors, resources for readers and subscribers, etc. The advanced search is the same as it was before, enabling you to do a more detailed search of articles on

You will find detailed tips about searching on this page.

What changes were made to articles?

We’ve kept the basic article structure the same, but we’ve added some new features. Many of our articles are very long. We wanted to make them more manageable. We’ve introduced some navigational tabs at the top, so you can find related content more easily, without having to scroll down, and you can find out how popular an article is by clicking on the new article metrics tab.

We know that our readers are very busy, so we’ve developed an easy read option for articles. This gives you just the text of the article in a new format. There are no ads, and no links. This feature is in addition to the ability to get an article in pdf format.

We’ve kept the "email a friend" button and the social bookmarking links, but there are now also links to Twitter and Facebook if you want to share an article more widely.

Another change we’ve made is to merge the abstract and full text views on research papers, which are free to view as part of the BMJ’s open access remit. Previously you had to click between the two. We hope this make things easier.

Have rapid responses changed?

Yes. We now have a separate tab at the top of each article. Clicking on this shows you the latest responses. You can also read them in different ways, and rank them by popularity, as well as by date.

Why have Folders gone?

There used to be a link to Folders on all articles, but earlier this year our colleagues in BMJ Learning launched BMJ Portfolio. This is a free resource to help you track and record CPD/CME credits online. From now on all articles include a link to BMJ Portfolio.

If you have used Folders in the past and want to access them, go to

For more information about BMJ Portfolio, go to

How can I access archived content?

As the BMJ is an open access publication all research is free to access, but non-research articles are now behind access controls. We changed our policy in January 2012 to ensure the sustainability of open access publication of research in the BMJ. Charging for archived content helps the journal to defray some of its open access publishing costs. You can access the entire archive on, dating back to 1840, by taking out a personal or institutional subscription. Free access is also available as a BMA membership benefit. Alternatively, you can buy individual articles by clicking on the link when you view an extract.

Has there been any change to BMJ Careers?

The BMJ Careers website is a separate site and so is not affected. But the new has links to the latest jobs from lots of pages, and there is a feed of latest news from BMJ Careers on the new homepage.

How can I find out what’s new in print?

The best way is via the homepage, where we have an image of the current print issue cover and a list to the table of contents.

How can I access the content on

Please see our resources page:

Where can I access usage reports for my institution?

The administrator at your site can access reports here:

General information about BMJ Group usage stats can be found here:

How much is a subscription to

For pricing information please go here:

Can I pay online?

Yes, you can make an online payment when you subscribe. We accept payment by VISA, VISA debit, Mastercard, and Maestro.

Is VAT payable on subscriptions?

Any VAT payable is calculated for you online. Online access for customers in the UK and EU is subject to UK VAT at the standard rate.

Subscriptions by customers outside the UK and EU do not fall within the scope of UK VAT.

Please see our subscription page for full information on prices and VAT:

How long will my subscription last?

Your subscription to BMJ will last one year.

Is it possible to backdate my print subscription?

Yes it is possible to backdate your subscription by up to 18 months

Am I able to purchase a subscription for my institution?

Yes. For institutional subscription rates, please contact our customer service team (, or telephone +44 (0)20 7383 6270). Discounted rates are available for institutions subscribing to multiple products from BMJ Group. For multiple product quotations and for subscription covering more than one site please contact our sales team (

Can I access via Athens?

If your institution has a subscription to you can access the site using Athens authentication. Your institution must be registered with Athens, and the Athens ID must be associated with your institutional account.

How can I contact customer services?

You can contact customer services by email. We aim to respond within 48 hours. Alternatively, you can call +44 (0)20 7383 6270 (Monday-Friday between 9 am and 10 pm GMT).

How do I register for email alerts?

For information on alert registration please go here:

I am a BMA member. How do I find out about further benefits of my BMA membership?

You can find out more about the benefits of BMA membership on the BMA website.

How do I change my login details for

Go to the site settings page:

My account details have changed. What do I do?

You can update your details at any time. You can change your profession and specialty details, and also update your contact details. There is no need to re-register. Simply go to 'My account':

Has the print issue changed?

There have been some design changes to the print issue and these took effect at the same time as the web redesign. The running order is slightly different – News comes first, and Shortcuts has been renamed Research news.

How can I feed back about the redesign?

Please tell us what you think about the changes, and if you are having any problems. You can contact the customer services team at or telephone +44 (0)20 7383 6270.

We have also set up a specific redesign feedback email address, at