Section I.Purpose



IV. Responsibilities and Procedures

V. Retention of Manuscript

VI. Other Relevant Policies


This guide provides a procedure for review/clearance of all scientific and technical manuscripts intended for publication by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)(1). This includes describing general responsibilities for clearance within C/I/O's, cross-clearance, dispute resolution, and final clearance. The guide is intended to ensure that CDC-cleared publications, including those released electronically, are consistent with CDC policies and are scientifically and technically accurate.


This guide applies to clearance of scientific/technical manuscripts intended for publication, including those developed in conjunction with cooperative agreements, contracts, and other partnerships involving CDC authors or coauthors. This guide also applies to abstracts that are intended to be published in proceedings of meetings. Staff engaged in professional committee activities at CDC's Centers/Institute/Offices (C/I/Os) should follow these C/I/O policies for clearance of the committee's products. (Some C/I/Os require oral presentations to go through the clearance process. Please refer to individual C/I/O Clearance Procedures for more information.)

This policy does not cover audio or video products, or exhibits. See Manual Guide-- Public Affairs Management CDC-3, Audiovisuals (Excluding Exhibits), and Manual Guide--Public Affairs Management CDC-4, Exhibits for appropriate policy guidelines for nonwritten materials.


Author - the CDC-affiliated person whose name is listed first on the authorship line.

Coauthor - all other CDC-affiliated authors.

NOTE: When reporting on work conducted while affiliated with CDC, former CDC personnel are considered CDC authors or coauthors for clearance purposes. (Investigations or thesis work done prior to joining CDC is not considered to be work done while affiliated with CDC.)

Manuscript - text (including any tables and illustrations) that will be submitted for publication.

Publication - written material to be distributed in print or electronic media (e.g., by Fax, Internet, or diskette).


A. General Responsibilities for Clearance Within C/I/Os

C/I/O Directors are responsible to the Director, CDC, for the scientific and technical accuracy and policy implications of all scientific/technical manuscripts originating in their C/I/Os.

C/I/O Directors are responsible for providing written procedures and guidelines for the C/I/O components to follow for manuscript clearance. The clearance process should be consistently followed and should ensure that

NOTE: C/I/O Directors may request policy clearance from the Office of the Director, CDC, for manuscripts that pose policy concerns.

B. Cross-Clearance

The purpose of cross-clearance between C/I/Os is to ensure that policy implications and scientific quality have been reviewed and approved by all C/I/Os whose staff are coauthors of a manuscript.

In addition, a C/I/O Director (or designee) should request cross-clearance of a manuscript from another C/I/O specifically to ensure that statements with policy implications are not in conflict with the policies of the other C/I/O. It is the responsibility of the author's C/I/O Director (or designee) to initiate appropriate cross-clearance(s) for policy implications for a specific manuscript, and to indicate that as the reason for cross-clearance.

NOTE: The responsibility for initiating clearance lies with the C/I/O who has supervisory responsibilities for the author when the manuscript is prepared. If this C/I/O is not the author's C/I/O of record, then cross- clearance needs to include the C/I/O of record.

Each C/I/O should clearly designate a person responsible for processing cross- clearances. Cross-clearances should be processed quickly, with a response (approval, disapproval with justification) delivered to the initiating C/I/O within two to three weeks. If cross-clearance is delayed, the initiating C/I/O may notify the cross-clearing C/I/O that publication will proceed without cross-clearance.

Some C/I/Os' programs may be affected by the content of other C/I/Os' publications (and resulting publicity). In such cases if cross-clearance is not requested, a copy of the manuscript should be sent to the relevant C/I/O(s) as early as possible during the clearance process to allow for informal review and comment. In the circumstance when a C/I/O utilizes data collected and maintained by another C/I/O, and has not included the contributing C/I/O in the clearance process, an information copy of the final manuscript should be sent to the contributing C/I/O.

C. Dispute Resolution on Clearance Issues

Occasionally, disputes in scientific/technical, policy, and editorial areas may arise during the clearance process of a manuscript. Each C/I/O should develop procedures for dealing with disputes that arise within the C/I/O.

The following steps are given as guidelines to developing procedures for dealing with disputes that involve other C/I/Os or external collaborators. The guiding principle is that the resolution of conflict should occur at the lowest possible level of the organization.

For Disputes Within or Between C/I/Os

The disputants should try to resolve the conflict between themselves;

If the conflict persists, they should proceed to resolve through their respective supervisory channels. If a satisfactory solution is not achieved, the disputants may meet with their respective Assistant or Associate Directors for Science (or other person designated by the C/I/O Director) to arrive at resolution. If all else fails, the disputants and/or supervisors and/or Assistant or Associate Directors for Science (or other person designated by the C/I/O Director) may go to the Associate Director for Science, CDC, for final resolution.

For Disputes Between CDC Authors and External Collaborators

The disputants should try to resolve the conflict between themselves.

If a satisfactory solution is not achieved, then the disputants may ask their supervisors and/or Assistant or Associate Director for Science or equivalent and/or the Associate Director for Science, CDC, to mediate.

D. Final Clearance

The author's C/I/O Director (or designee) is responsible for final approval or rejection of a manuscript on behalf of CDC. This action will be recorded on clearance form CDC 0.576, or equivalent CDC-approved clearance form.

When approval/disapproval has been signified by all of the appropriate C/I/O staff and by all concerned C/I/Os, the author should be notified, and the manuscript and a copy of clearance form CDC 0.576, or equivalent CDC- approved clearance form, should be sent to the author. The author is responsible for getting the concurrence of coauthors in any substantive modifications in the manuscript as a result of the review/clearance procedure.

Publications carrying CDC's name as the publisher or in which CDC has a proprietary interest and are intended for external distribution must be cleared through the Office of Public Affairs (OPA) by using form HHS 615. Please refer to Manual Guide--Public Affairs Management No. CDC-2 for further guidance with this type of clearance.

For newsworthy manuscripts, an information copy of the abstract and completed clearance form should be sent, as hardcopy or electronically, to OPA, CDC.


Authors should inform their C/I/O's office of record of subsequent revisions and the final disposition of the manuscript. The record copy of the manuscript and the record clearance form should be kept in the C/I/O's designated office of record for at least 5 years. Then, the official manuscript should be transferred to the Federal Records Center (FRC) for permanent storage. Other copies may be destroyed when they are no longer needed for reference. Supporting material may be transferred to the FRC when 2 years old and destroyed when 10 years old.


¨ Manual Guide--Public Affairs Management No. CDC-2, CDC Publications

¨ Manual Guide--Public Affairs Management No. CDC-3, Audiovisuals (Excluding Exhibits)

¨ Manual Guide--Public Affairs Management No. CDC-4, Exhibits

¨ Manual Guide--Printing Management No. CDC-6, Publication Costs and Reprints of CDC articles in Private Journals

¨ Manual Guide--General Administration No. CDC-69, Authorship of CDC or ATSDR Publications

¨ Related Internet policies______________

(1) 1 References to CDC also apply to the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR).