The PubMed Central reference number (PMCID) is different from the PubMed reference number (PMID). PubMed Central is an index of full-text papers, while PubMed is an index of abstracts. The PMCID links to full-text papers in PubMed Central, while the PMID links to abstracts in PubMed. PMIDs have nothing to do with the NIH Public Access Policy.
PMCIDs are listed in the lower right corner of the Abstract Plus view of PubMed. If the paper is successfully processed but not yet publicly available on PMC, PubMed will also list the date the paper will become available.
1. Include the PubMed Central number (PMCID) at the end of citations when submitting an NIH application, proposal or report.
For papers published more than 3 months before an application, proposal and report is submitted:
For papers in press (often listed as "[epub ahead of print]"), or published within 3 months of when an application, proposal or report is submitted:
Note: no special notation is required when manually citing publications that do not fall under the public access policy.
2. Place the literature citations in the appropriate location.
The appropriate locations for literature citations vary depending on the application type. See Guide notice NOT-OD-08-119