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From the Editor

‘Nielsen’ survey tells us you like Current Psychiatry

Vol. 3, No. 5 / May 2004

We all know about the Nielsen ratings, which track how many households are watching any given television program. Medical journals have a similar rating system called Focus (produced by Nielsen sister company PERQ/HCI), which tracks how many doctors are reading each journal and how thoroughly they read—cover-to-cover, skim, or not at all.

The reason for the Nielsen and Focus surveys, of course, is advertising revenue. Current Psychiatry—like ABC, CBS, and NBC—is supported almost entirely by advertising, which enables you to receive these TV networks and this medical journal for free.

Twice a year, PERQ/HCI sends Focus surveys to 500 to 600 general psychiatrists, then extrapolates the responses to the universe of 32,797 potential readers. Any of you whom the AMA lists as practicing general psychiatrists—including residents—are in the Focus pool.

Our staff recently received the December 2003 Focus survey tabulations, and I was thrilled. More psychiatrists are reading Current Psychiatry than many other psychiatric journals, including those I assumed were the most widely read. Our readership increased more than 20% in the 6 months since June 2003. And although news tabloids consistently show the highest readership, Current Psychiatry—in only its third year of publication—is being read cover to cover more than any other psychiatric journal.

I interpret these results as validating Current Psychiatry’s founding principle: to publish authoritative information you can use in your practice this week. I welcome your ideas and suggestions (

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