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Information for Authors: Health & Social Work

Health & Social Work, established in 1976, is a professional journal committed to improving social work practice and expanding knowledge in health care. It is written for workers in all areas of the physiological, psychological, social, cultural, and environmental health sciences. Health is defined broadly to include both physical and mental health. The editorial board welcomes manuscripts on all aspects of health that are of professional concern to social workers. The journal carries articles on practice, social policy and planning, legislative issues, innovations in health care, and research.

The editorial board of Health & Social Work strives to include articles that appeal to its broad constituency, addressing both practice and policy issues. Related articles are often grouped in an issue. A call for papers on special themes may be issued on topics of major importance to the field, such as substance abuse or mental health.

Reviewers look for submissions to

  • be important to social work and relevant to health
  • contain a clear statement of purpose and a consistent focus
  • expand current knowledge
  • build on the work of others
  • contain a current and appropriate literature review
  • include relevant medical information, such as etiology, prognosis, and hereditary factors, if disease specific
  • present complete methodology for a research article
  • be well organized, with a logical, orderly presentation
  • support conclusions with data or a logical argument
  • contain a clear explication of the implications for social work.


Manuscripts for full-length articles may not exceed 20 pages, including components. The entire review process is anonymous. At least three reviewers critique each manuscript, after which the editor-in-chief makes a decision, taking those reviews into consideration.


Practice Forum offers authors the opportunity to describe practice innovations and action research. It is designed to publish material that is important to and written by practitioners. Submissions should describe new and effective programs, techniques, or policies. The editor of the Practice Forum may assist authors in developing articles for the column. Practice Forum submissions may be no longer than eight pages.

National Health Line reports current legislative and political issues that have implications for social work practice in health settings. It provides a link between social work practice and health care policy. Written by the column editor, National Health Line presents contemporary issues that could have the greatest impact on social work clients. Suggestions for topics to be covered are invited.

Viewpoint features readers’ comments and opinions on current issues in the profession. It offers writers an opportunity to express their opinion on issues that may have an impact on social work or social work clients in health or mental health settings. Viewpoint submissions may be no longer than seven pages.

Letters to the Editor enhance professional dialogue by providing readers the opportunity to comment on issues covered in the journal or other points of interest to social workers in health or mental health settings. Although we acknowledge and read all letters, not all can be published. Letters selected by the editor-in-chief may be shortened to fit the available space. Letters to the Editor submissions may be no longer than two pages.

To prepare your manuscript in the proper format for submission view the Author Guidelines. Please submit manuscripts as Word documents through the online submission portal at (initial, one-time registration is required).