The Journal of Health and Pollution (JH&P) was conceived in 2010, publishing the first issue in February 2011. Our original impetus to create JH&P was to increase understanding of the health effects of environmental contamination in low- and middle-income countries (LMIC). This problem was thought to be large and not well understood, with mortality and morbidity in LMIC much greater than that in high-income countries (HIC), even after accounting for the compounding effects of poverty, malnutrition, overcrowding and poor housing conditions.1  In 2010 there was little published research documenting concrete findings, and little originating from affected LMIC.

Our scientific focus was point source pollution, related health impacts, environmental control and remediation technologies, and ambient and indoor pollution, particularly heavy metals, pesticides, radionuclides, dioxins, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and air particulates. This remained the main focus, but we also published articles on medical, pharmaceutical and solid waste in LMIC, many articles on the intersection between our contaminants of focus and occupational health, and several sets of conference abstracts, including those from the last three meetings of the International Network on Children's Health, Environment and Safety (INCHES).2  The health effects and remediation of lead (Pb) remained a constant theme, with about one third of all articles touching on Pb.3  In the past year, JH&P along with most other health related journals received submissions focusing on the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic as it related to our areas of focus.

We quickly developed an additional goal of nurturing authors from underrepresented areas of the world, typically LMIC. In addition to living with high amounts of environmental contamination, researchers from many LMIC face the same pressure to publish as their colleagues in HIC, but often resources such as information, training, translation, editing and support networks are not available.4 

To support authors we aimed to provide detailed and high quality reviews to all articles within our area of focus, created a small grants program to support unfinished work (2012–2016), and partnered with AuthorAID5  to deliver an online course in Research Writing to Environmental Health Researchers, limited to researchers from countries within World Health Organization (WHO) Mortality Strata B through E.6  We also had no charges for authors or readers, supporting JH&P with funds from the World Bank and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), and provided free English language copyediting to all accepted manuscripts.

We are proud to have published articles from countries very underrepresented in the scientific literature, including Algeria,7  Armenia,8  Belize,9  Botswana,10  Jamaica,1114  Liberia,15  Mongolia,16  Myanmar/Burma,17,18  Nepal,19,20  Sri Lanka,21  Sudan,22,23  Tajikistan,24  Tanzania,2527  Togo,28, 29  Uganda3033  and Zimbabwe.34 

Submission and acceptance data for the thirteen most represented countries by corresponding author can be found in Table 1.

Table 1 —

Article Submissions and Publication Rate by Country

Article Submissions and Publication Rate by Country
Article Submissions and Publication Rate by Country

Language consistently presented the greatest challenge. For some of our authors, English was a third or even fourth language, and sometimes barriers to communication in complex peer reviews could not be surmounted. Additionally, we were not able to provide any article processing (reviews, editing) in any language other than English, leading to Latin America being underrepresented in our submission data. Acceptance and publication rates tended to be highest in countries where the population is educated in English. In recent years we received some well written and interesting submissions from Iran, however were unable to process them due to continuing sanctions. Our acceptance rate was 22% in 2020.

By 2018, JH&P was indexed in the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ), Scopus, PubMed, Clarivate Analytics Emerging Sources Citation Index, Biological Abstracts and BIOSIS Previews and was a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE).

We developed a robust Editorial Board and attracted over 700 peer reviewers—too many to individually mention and thank here. Many reviewers went out of their way to provide detailed, constructive and kind reviews to under-supported authors, and for that I am very grateful.

This is the final edition of JH&P with Pure Earth35 as the publisher. I am proud of our achievements and hope we have enhanced the knowledge bank of environmental contamination challenges globally.

Acknowledgments

This study was funded as part of employment.

References

1.
The Lancet Commission on pollution and health.
The Lancet [Internet]
2018
Feb
;
391
(
10119
):
462
512
.
2.
International Network on Children's Health, Environment and Safety.
3.
World Health Organization.
Lead poisoning and health
.
2019
4.
Franzen
SRP,
Chandler
C,
Lang
T.
Health research capacity development in low- and middle-income countries: reality or rhetoric? A systematic meta-narrative review of the qualitative literature
.
BMJ Open
2017
;
7
:
e012332
.
6.
World Health Organization.
List of Member States by WHO Region and Mortality Stratum
.
7.
Halfadji
A,
Naous
M,
Bettiche
F,
Touabet
A.
Human Health Assessment of Sixteen Priority Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons in Contaminated Soils of Northwestern Algeria
.
J Health Pollution
.
Forthcoming
2021
.
8.
Tadevosyan
NS,
Kirakosyan
GV,
Muradyan
SA,
Poghosyan
SB,
Khachatryan
BG.
Relationship between Respiratory Morbidity and Environmental Exposure to Organochlorine Pesticides in Armenia
.
J Health Pollution
.
Forthcoming
2021
.
9.
Husaini
DC,
Enriquez
A,
Arzu
T,
Miranda
K,
Mossiah
D,
Cardinez
C.
Nitrate Levels in Rural Drinking Water in Belize
.
J Health Pollution
1
September
2020
;
10
(
27
):
10.
Wiston
M.
Status of Air Pollution in Botswana and Significance to Air Quality and Human Health
.
Journal of Health and Pollution
1
September
2017
;
7
(
15
):
8
17
.
11.
Smith
L,
Voutchkov
M.
Assessment of Radon Levels in Drinking Water Wells in St. Catherine, Jamaica
.
J Health Pollution
1
December
2017
;
7
(
16
):
31
37
.
12.
Fevrier-Paul
A,
Soyibo
AK,
Mitchell
S,
Voutchkov
M.
Role of Toxic Elements in Chronic Kidney Disease
.
J Health Pollution
1
December
2018
;
8
(
20
):
13.
Ricketts
P,
Knight
C,
Gordon
A,
Boischio
A,
Voutchkov
M.
Mercury Exposure Associated with Use of Skin Lightening Products in Jamaica
.
J Health Pollution
1
June
2020
;
10
(
26
):
14.
Fevrier-Paul
A,
Soyibo
AK,
De Silva
N,
Mitchell
S,
Nwokocha
C,
Voutchkov
M.
Addressing the Challenge of Potentially Hazardous Elements in the Reduction of Hypertension, Diabetes and Chronic Kidney Disease in the Caribbean
.
J Health Pollution
1
June
2021
;
11
(
30
):
15.
Apeh
CC.
Survey of Sachet Water Waste Disposal in Liberia
.
J Health Pollution
1
December
2018
;
8
(
20
):
181211
.
16.
Naidansuren
E,
Dondog
A,
Erdenesaikhan
B,
Byambanyam
E.
Heavy Metal Pollution Near a Tannery in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
.
J Health Pollution
1
December
2017
;
7
(
16
):
2
11
.
17.
Myint Mar
K.
Cadmium Uptake and Relationship to Feeding Habits of Freshwater Fish from the Ayeyarwady River, Mandalay, Myanmar
.
J Health Pollution
1
June
2020
;
10
(
26
):
18.
Zaw Tun
A,
Wongsasuluk
P,
Siriwong
W.
Heavy Metals in the Soils of Placer Small-Scale Gold Mining Sites in Myanmar
.
J Health Pollution
1
September
2020
;
10
(
27
):
200911
.
19.
Paudel
U,
Prasad Pant
K.
Beyond Smoking: Environmental Determinants of Asthma Prevalence in Western Nepal
.
J Health Pollution
1
March
2020
;
10
(
25
):
200310
.
20.
Baral
BD,
Thapa
K.
Effect of the COVID-19 Lockdown on Ambient Air Quality in Major Cities of Nepal
.
J Health Pollution
1
March
2021
;
11
(
29
):
210211
.
21.
Palihakkara
CR,
Dassanayake
S,
Jayawardena
C,
Senanayake
IP.
Floating Wetland Treatment of Acid Mine Drainage using Eichhornia crassipes (Water Hyacinth)
.
J Health Pollution
1
March
2018
;
8
(
17
):
14
19
.
22.
Abdelbagi
AO,
Abdalla Ismail
RE,
Ahmed Ishag
AES,
Ali Hammad
AM.
Pesticide Residues in Eggplant Fruit from Khartoum State, Sudan
.
Journal of Health and Pollution
1
March
2020
;
10
(
25
):
200304
.
23.
Mohamed
AO,
Abdelbagi
AO,
Abdalla
AM,
Ahmed Ishag
AES,
Ali Hammad
AM,
Hamed Gadallah
NA,
Hur
J-H.
Insecticide Residues in Cotton, Sorghum and Fallow Soil from the Nuba Mountains Cotton Corporation of South Kordofan State, Sudan
.
Journal of Health and Pollution
1
June
2021
;
11
(
30
):
210608
.
24.
Ulugov
UA,
Bobritskaya
LS,
Sinitsky
J.
Inventory of Obsolete Pesticide Warehouses in Tajikistan and Implications for Removal of Contaminated Soil
.
Journal of Health and Pollution
1
March
2018
;
8
(
17
):
1
5
.
25.
Mshana
JG,
Sekadende
B.
Assessment of Heavy Metal Pollution in Octopus cyanea in the Coastal Waters of Tanzania
.
Journal of Health and Pollution
1
March
2014
;
4
(
6
):
10
17
.
26.
Grayson Mshana
J.
Mercury and Lead Contamination in Three Fish Species and Sediments from Lake Rukwa and Catchment Areas in Tanzania
.
Journal of Health and Pollution
1
June
2015
;
5
(
8
):
7
18
.
27.
Nyanza
EC,
Yohana
P,
Thomas
DSK,
Thurston
WE,
Konje
E,
Dewey
D.
Knowledge of and Adherence to the Cyanide Code Among Small-scale Gold Miners in Northern Tanzania
.
Journal of Health and Pollution
1
June
2017
;
7
(
14
):
4
14
.
28.
Tanouayi
G,
Gnandi
K,
Ouro-Sama
K,
Aduayi-Akue
AA,
Ahoudi
H,
Nyametso
Y,
Solitoke
HD.
Distribution of Fluoride in the Phosphorite Mining Area of Hahotoe–Kpogame (Togo)
.
Journal of Health and Pollution
1
June
2016
;
6
(
10
):
84
94
.
29.
Amouzouvi
YM,
Dzagli
MM,
Sagna
K,
Török
Z,
Andreea Roba
Carmen,
Alexandru
Mereuţă,
Alexandru
Ozunu,
Kodjovi
Sidéra Edjame;
Evaluation of Pollutants Along the National Road N2 in Togo using the AERMOD Dispersion Model
.
Journal of Health and Pollution
1
September
2020
;
10
(
27
):
200908
.
30.
Kaye
E,
Nyombi
A,
Mutambuze
IL,
Muwesa
R.
Mancozeb Residue on Tomatoes in Central Uganda
.
Journal of Health and Pollution
1
June
2015
;
5
(
8
):
1
6
.
31.
Namuhani
N,
Cyrus
K.
Soil Contamination with Heavy Metals around Jinja Steel Rolling Mills in Jinja Municipality, Uganda
.
Journal of Health and Pollution
1
December
2015
;
5
(
9
):
61
67
.
32.
Stoffersen
B,
Køster-Rasmussen
R,
Contreras Cardeño
JI,
Appel
PWU,
Smidth
S,
Na-Oy
LD,
Libua Lardizabal
D,
Onos
RW.
Comparison of Gold Yield with Traditional Amalgamation and Direct Smelting in Artisanal Small-Scale Gold Mining in Uganda
.
Journal of Health and Pollution
1
December
2019
;
9
(
24
):
191205
.
33.
Wanyana
MW,
Agaba
FE,
Sekimpi
DK,
Mukasa
VN,
Kamese
GN,
Douglas
N,
Ssempebwa
JC.
Mercury Exposure Among Artisanal and Small-Scale Gold Miners in Four Regions in Uganda
.
Journal of Health and Pollution
1
June
2020
;
10
(
26
):
200613
.
34.
Teta
C,
Hikwa
T.
Heavy Metal Contamination of Ground Water from an Unlined Landfill in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe
.
Journal of Health and Pollution
1
September
2017
;
7
(
15
):
18
27
.

Competing Interests

Competing Interests. The authors declare no competing financial interests.

This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/).