In September 2004, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) proposed that research articles based on NIH funding, in whole or in part, be deposited in PubMed Central, NIH's online archive of biomedical literature. These articles would become publicly available six months after publication in a peer-reviewed journal. The proposal, NOT-OD-04-064, sought to accelerate the pace of discovery, provide additional capabilities to NIH in managing its research portfolio, and enhance public access to biomedical literatures.
Following months of public input, in May 2005, NIH released a Public Access Policy to make peer-reviewed, final manuscripts stemming from NIH-funded research available to the public free of charge on PubMed Central within 12 months after publication in a scientific journal. The 2005 policy strongly encouraged authors to post for public accessibility as soon as possible.
On January 11, 2008, NIH announced a new NIH Public Access Policy, NOT-OD-08-033, that becomes effective April 7, 2008. This policy calls for mandatory deposit in PubMed Central of peer-reviewed electronic manuscripts stemming from NIH funding upon acceptance for publication and stipulates that these manuscripts be made publicly available within 12 months of publication.