© 2011 Vasile Astărăstoae1, Beatrice Ioan2, Cătălin Jan Iov3
Key words: bioethics, Romanian bioethics, clinical ethics, research ethics
Abstract: The authors tell the story of creation of Romanian Journal of Bioethics, which 1st issue saw the light in Iasi in 2003. The Journal was demanded both by specialists in this field, and by the society at large: it has been giving information on ethics in life sciences and biomedical studies. It publishes multidisciplinary articles from scholars around the world (Australia, Italy, USA, Romania) in Romanian and English. In January 2007 Romanian Journal of Bioethics was ISI indexed by Thomson Scientific in Science Citation Index, Social Sciences Citation Index, Social Scisearch, Journal Citation Reports/Social Sciences Edition şi Journal Citation Reports/Science Edition, with a reported impact factor of 0.48.
In a continuously changing world it is sometimes difficult to understand the way things may go. Though, one thing is for sure – nothing has a greater influence on evolution than human knowledge. However, science is many times guided by principles of utility and efficiency which may generate moral conflicts, may break social and judicial boundaries, and may raise difficult questions that must be answered. The answer to these difficult challenges was the rise of Bioethics. To describe its nature and content, principles and values, as well as its inherent conflicts, Bioethics needs a reflection framework that allows expressing free and non-prejudiced different points of view. Today, no one can deny the creative dimension of Bioethics. Yet, as in all creations, Bioethics needs a way to promote its concepts. Our answer to this need is «Romanian Journal of Bioethics». On the one hand, Romanian Journal of Bioethics appeared as a response to the need of Romanian professionals in various fields and of Romanian society at large for information on ethics in life sciences and biomedical research. On the other hand the bioethical approach is strongly influenced by the cultural specificity of each community, by its customary laws, by the group psychology, behavior and morals commonly accepted. Local specificity has to be considered for the debates in this field to be realistic and applicable. Consequently the inputs generated by local specificity could enrich the bioethical concepts with national features in the framework of a Romanian Bioethics.
In this context the first issue of the Romanian Journal of Bioethics was published in Iasi, by an enthusiastic group of physicians led by Prof. Dr. Vasile Astarastoae in spring 2003. Since then, the journal is published quarterly (January- March, April-June, July-September, and October-December).
The Romanian Journal of Bioethics is published in both Romanian and English under the Bioethics Commission of the Romanian College of Physicians by the College of Physicians of Iasi. It is externally peer reviewed with each manuscript being submitted to two independent reviewers who are professionals from various fields such as: medicine, law, economics, theology, philosophy, psychology, engineering etc.
The articles published in the Romanian Journal of Bioethics, written by both Romanian and foreign authors, cover a large area of issues in clinical and research ethics both in Romania and worldwide, such as: patient-physician relationship, beginning of life, end of life, organ transplantation, genetics, HIV/AIDS, public health, health policies, spirituality and medicine, vulnerability, animal rights etc.
The Journal is also benefiting from the experience of the Advisory Board members who are specialists in various fields (medicine, philosophy, sociology, theology, law etc) and from different countries across the world (Australia, Italy, USA, and Romania).
Currently the Romanian Journal of Bioethics is available both in electronic format 4 (free access) and in paper format.
In January 2007, Romanian Journal of Bioethics was ISI indexed by Thomson Scientific in Science Citation Index, Social Sciences Citation Index, Social Scisearch, Journal Citation Reports/Social Sciences Edition şi Journal Citation Reports/Science Edition, with a reported impact factor of 0.48.
Even if it is still young, the Romanian Journal of Bioethics is a reference resource for many of the Romanian professionals in various fields and an already very well-known and valued publication.
For the members of editorial team the Romanian Journal of Bioethics represents both a challenge to increase its value and a passion as all of them spent effort and energy to make it an important resource which strengthens the considerable progress in the field of Bioethics that was already obtained in our country.
- MD, PhD, JD, University Professor, «Gr.T. Popa» University of Medicine and Pharmacy of Iasi, Romania, Dept. of Legal Medicine, Medical Deontology and Bioethics, Editor in Chief – Romanian Journal of Bioethics.
- MD, PhD, MA (Bioethics), Associate Professor, «Gr.T.Popa» University of Medicine and Pharmacy of Iasi, Romania, Dept. of Legal Medicine, Medical Deontology and Bioethics, Vice Editor in Chief – Romanian Journal of Bioethics, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Engineer, PhD, MA (Bioethics), Editor of the Romanian Journal of Bioethics, e-mail:email@example.com