The IU Libraries can help with:

  • Answering questions about the policy on an individual basis or meeting with groups or departments
  • Assisting with copyright questions or publisher agreements
  • Researching publisher policies for compliance
  • Helping grant submitters find citation information and PMCIDs

For more information


  • Please contact your librarian or send a message using our contact us page.

  • See the NIH FAQ on the new reporting requirements.


What is required?

Peer-reviewed papers accepted for publication on/after April 7, 2008 that result in whole or in part from NIH-funded research must be submitted to the National Library of Medicine’s PubMed Central via the NIH Manuscript Submission System and made available within 12 months of publication. The author is responsible for submission of the peer-reviewed manuscript including all graphics and supplemental material. The public access policy applies to any and all peer-reviewed papers published based on the NIH-supported research – whether by the principal investigator(s), research associate, and post-doctoral fellow.


Who is affected?

The Policy applies to you if your peer-reviewed paper is based on work in one or more of the following categories:

  1. Directly funded by an NIH grant or cooperative agreement active in Fiscal Year 2008 (October 1, 2007- September 30, 2008) or beyond;
  2. Directly funded by a contract signed on or after April 7, 2008;
  3. Directly funded by the NIH Intramural Program.
  4. If NIH pays your salary.

Complying with the New Requirement


Address Copyright

Before signing any publishing agreement, make sure that any copyright transfer or other publication agreements allow the paper to be submitted to NIH in accordance with the Policy. Please see next section on copyright agreements.

Submit Paper

Authors may submit a paper to the journal of their choice for publication.

  1. If you choose to publish your paper in certain journals, you need do nothing further to comply with the submission requirement of the Policy. See the list of journals.
  2. For any journal other than one of those in this list, the author must:
    1. Inform the journal that the paper is subject to the Public Access Policy when submitting it for publication.
    2. Make sure that any copyright transfer or other publication agreement allows the paper to be submitted to NIH in accordance with the Policy.
    3. Submit the paper to NIH, upon acceptance for publication. See the Submission Process for more information.

Cite Paper

When citing their NIH-funded papers in NIH applications, proposals or progress reports, authors must include the PubMed Central reference number for each paper.  See FAQ on how to cite papers.

Copyright Agreements

If a journal does not submit directly to PMC, the investigator should ensure that language is included in copyright agreements for publications to ensure that the agreement between the investigator and the publisher allows for submission to PMC. The NIH has recommended the following language:

"(Journal) acknowledges that Author retains the right to provide a copy of the final manuscript to the NIH upon acceptance for Journal publication, for public archiving in PubMed Central as soon as possible but no later than 12 months after publication by Journal."

Alternatively, attach the Scholar's Copyright Delayed Access Addendum to the publication contract.  The Addendum is a legal instrument that acknowledges any prior grants (including those required by funding agencies).  It also provides you with other important rights, including the right to use your paper in your own teaching and research, the right to build on the paper in future publications, and the right to deposit the PDF version from the publisher with PMC.  An online engine that generates the Addendum is found at Note that the engine currently creates an agreement with a six month delay; this can be changed manually if the journal insists on PMC delaying access for the full twelve months.