Peer-review is the system used to assess the quality of a manuscript before it is published. Independent researchers in the relevant research area assess submitted manuscripts for originality, validity and significance to help editors determine whether the manuscript should be published in their journal. You can read more about the peer-review process here.
Critical Care operates a single-blind peer-review system, where the reviewers are aware of the names and affiliations of the authors, but the reviewer reports provided to authors are anonymous. The benefit of single-blind peer review is that it is the traditional model of peer review that many reviewers are comfortable with, and it facilitates a dispassionate critique of a manuscript.
Submitted manuscripts will generally be reviewed by two or more experts who will be asked to evaluate whether the manuscript is scientifically sound and coherent, whether it duplicates already published work, and whether or not the manuscript is sufficiently clear for publication. The Editors will reach a decision based on these reports and, where necessary, they will consult with members of the Editorial Board.
Expedited peer review
We recognise that scientifically sound, high quality manuscripts are often turned away from broad-scope "high-impact" journals based on the issue of "general interest." Critical Care will consider rapid publication of such manuscripts if they are submitted together with the original peer reviewer reports, letter of rejection, and a rebuttal. Please also mention this in your cover letter. Additional peer review may be necessary and the final decision will be made by the Editor.