Knowledge production that focuses primarily on health policies and health services typically displays a large intersection between research, intervention, and policy action. This characteristic appears in the difficulty in demarcating such knowledge as an area of Public Health, meanwhile impacting the multiplicity of terms (policy analyses, planning, management, evaluation, health practices and healthcare, and health services research, among others) and characteristics of the respective scientific output. Key characteristics include the intertwining of different theoretical and methodological perspectives and multiplicity of research approaches and themes.
In the international context, the area's scientific output has been published in journals with a wide diversity of names and objectives. The central objective in some journals is to foster dialogue between administrators, legislators, and researchers. Other scientific periodicals emphasize the dissemination of scientific evidence on health processes and practices, aimed at orienting health policies and health services organization.
CSP publishes scientific articles, while simultaneously acknowledging the importance of other formats that can harbor the field's production, including studies that are not the result of original research. In this sense, the Perspectives section has provided an important space for debate on public policies and relevant current issues for the production of measures targeted to health promotion and healthcare. The Essay section also allows incorporating theoretical and conceptual analyses and lessons on successful national and international experiences. Meanwhile, the Debate section aims to encourage critical reflection and dialogue between different areas of knowledge on relevant themes for the field.
The publication of articles in CSP deals directly with the challenges of scientific production in Public Health, including the difficulties involved in breaking with common sense. Manuscript submissions frequently fail to back their research question by identifying a relevant knowledge gap or controversy in the literature. They also frequently rely on official documents rather than scientific studies to contextualize and demarcate their object of investigation. In some cases, reliance on the argument of authority, backed by norms and recommendations, prevails over dialogue with scientific evidence produced by other studies. Some submissions display methodological problems with both the use of quantitative and qualitative research techniques and the presentation and analysis of results.
The importance of scientific journals relates directly to the guarantee of quality and relevance of what they publish, and there are important initiatives in this direction 11 Ogrinc G, Davies L, Goodman D, Batalden P, Davidoff F, Stevens D. SQUIRE 2.0 (Standards for Quality Improvement Reporting Excellence): revised publication guidelines from a detailed consensus process. BMJ Qual Saf 2015; doi:10.1136/bmjqs-2015-004411.
https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjqs-2015-00441... . In this sense, along the line of other Editorial22 Carvalho MS, Travassos C, Coeli CM. Mais do mesmo? Cad Saúde Pública 2013; 29:2141-3., CSP explicitly announces the characteristics it values when assessing articles (originality, relevance, and methodological rigor) and urges readers to renew the debate on the issues addressed here, identifying the knowledge frontiers that have received limited attention in the area of health policies and health services.
Linking research to practice requires that research answers be produced with the necessary rigor, thus allowing their application in practice, particularly in the development of the Brazilian Unified National Health System and improvement of the population's health
1Ogrinc G, Davies L, Goodman D, Batalden P, Davidoff F, Stevens D. SQUIRE 2.0 (Standards for Quality Improvement Reporting Excellence): revised publication guidelines from a detailed consensus process. BMJ Qual Saf 2015; doi:10.1136/bmjqs-2015-004411.
2Carvalho MS, Travassos C, Coeli CM. Mais do mesmo? Cad Saúde Pública 2013; 29:2141-3.
Publication in this collection