Intended for healthcare professionals


Accessible medical research

BMJ 2011; 342 doi: (Published 23 February 2011) Cite this as: BMJ 2011;342:d1190

This article has a correction. Please see:

  1. Trish Groves, deputy editor1, editor in chief2
  1. 1BMJ, London, UK
  2. 2BMJ Open, London, UK
  1. eic.bmjopen{at}

New journal BMJ Open provides open access to even more research

The world’s first website was launched in August 1992 at With rapid growth of the world wide web over the following decade came the idea that articles reporting publicly funded research, particularly in health, ought to be accessible to anyone. Although many traditional publishers remain wary of this concept, at BMJ Group our approach has been to see what works best for readers, authors, and funders while still paying the bills. So, within two and a half years of the birth of the web, “eBMJ” was online at, and in 1998 the BMJ became one of the first journals to provide full free access to all of its contents.

From 2005 gradually introduced a pay wall for non-research articles, so that income from subscriptions could support continuing free access to research articles.1 In 2010 the BMJ introduced article processing fees for research articles, …

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