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Managing NIH Public Access Compliance: Overview

This guide explains the NIH Public Access Policy, the process for submitting peer-reviewed articles to PubMed Central and how to use NIH tools to manage and verify compliance.

Steps to compliance

This guide offers detailed information on each step.

Use the tabs above to learn how to become fully compliant with the NIH Mandate.

PubMed Central

PubMed Central

PubMed Central was created in 2000 as a digital, open access repository for biomendical and life sciences journal literature. In 2008 Congress mandated that all peer-reviewed journal articles that arise from NIH-funded research must be submitted.

PubMed links to the full text articles in PubMed Central.

What does the policy require?

NIH logoPeer-reviewed journal articles arising from NIH-funded research and accepted for publication on or after 
April 7, 2008 must be deposited in PubMed Central (PMC).  

  • Submission to PMC must be completed within 3 months of acceptance for publication and the article made publicly available no later than 12 months after the publication date.
  • All communications with NIH, e.g. applications, proposals or progress reports, must include the PMC or NIH Manuscript Submission (NIHMS) reference number when citing applicable articles that arise from their NIH funded research.
  • NIH authors must use My NCBI Bibliography to enter the references in their eRA Commons professional bibliography.
  • NIH researcher, Primary Investigator and the Institution are responsible for compliance.

Effective July 1, 2013 NIH will delay processing of non-competing continuation grant awards if publications arising from them are not in compliance with the NIH Public Access Policy.​

Librarian Contact

Ahlam Saleh, Associate Librarian
Health Sciences Library, Tucson
University of Arizona

Additional Help


eRA Commons
Help Desk Form

NIH Manuscript Submission System

NIHMS help