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Pharmacy Audit Checklists

Proactively ensure compliance and audit-proof your pharmacy

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What is a Pharmacy Audit?

A pharmacy audit is a comprehensive review of operations and processes to verify compliance with regulations. Announced or unannounced pharmacy audits from the government or 3rd-party insurance companies usually aim to detect fraud, waste, and abuse. Non-compliance to the US Healthcare Fraud and Abuse Control Program (HCFAC) can lead to criminal investigations, revoked registration, and denied application renewal.

What is a Pharmacy Audit Checklist?

A pharmacy audit checklist is a preparation tool used by pharmacists who own, operate, or work in pharmacies to regularly perform an internal pharmacy audit. Maximizing digital pharmacy audit checklists can prevent costly audit chargebacks, save thousands of man-hours, and help uphold health and safety standards. This article features:

  1. Audit triggers and tips to prepare for—and prevent—a pharmacy audit;
  2. Powerful mobile checklist app to audit-proof your pharmacy; and
  3. Free pharmacy audit checklists you can download, customize, and use.

Situations that Trigger a Pharmacy Audit

Auditors look at exactly what problems need to be remedied, especially regarding prescriptions, pricing information, and the licensing and certification status of employees. Watch out for these crucial situations that might trigger an audit to be conducted in your pharmacy:

  • Patient Complaints
    As the primary audit trigger, pharmacists who own, operate, and work in pharmacies should provide high-quality customer service to avoid this. For example, a pharmacy audit can commence when a patient gives an anonymous tip about an employee stealing drugs.
  • Competitor Complaints
    The complaint resolution protocol of pharmacies should be established and followed, specifically when complaints come from competitors. Pharmacy managers should review their daily operations to determine any activity that might generate complaints.
  • Substantial Changes
    Take note of substantial changes in billing patterns, cost of ingredients, quantities dispensed, and schedule of drugs. Pharmacy staff should consistently monitor shipping and medication inventory logs to easily identify any of these audit triggers.
  • Significant Variances
    If there is a variance from a group of similar pharmacies, it is imperative to confirm that the pharmacy is assigned to the right group. Charge variance among pharmacies of the same size, city, or region prompts a pharmacy audit to determine the root cause of the discrepancy.

5 Tips for Pharmacy Audit Preparation (and Prevention)

When a pharmacy audit begins, even if the trigger turns out to be inconclusive, the audit will still proceed and the auditors will report whatever they find. Here are 5 tips to effectively prepare for (and prevent) a pharmacy audit:

  1. Clarify the scope of the pharmacy audit to ensure that only the necessary information is provided.
  2. Gather documentation requirements such as policies and procedures, invoices, and logs (signature, controlled substances, etc.). Never alter records.
  3. Validate the negative findings before the auditors complete the pharmacy audit report.
  4. Avoid common record-keeping issues such as billing and clerical errors during the prescription process by regularly auditing all staff.
  5. Perform comprehensive self-audits using mobile-ready pharmacy audit checklists to proactively ensure compliance.

Pharmacy Audit Checklist App

Unannounced insurance audits and government investigations can easily be prevented when pharmacies successfully harness new technology. iAuditor, the world’s most powerful inspection software, can help pharmacies identify shortcomings and improve processes before auditors arrive, prevent costly audit chargebacks, and save thousands of man-hours from avoidable criminal investigations. Empower your pharmacy staff to:

  • Perform a comprehensive pharmacy audit using mobile devices
  • Capture photo evidence of best practices or non-compliance
  • Send real-time notifications for corrective actions and scheduled audits
  •  Automatically generate and share pharmacy audit reports to members of your organization. Preview sample report.
  • Use for free with small teams. Unlimited reports and storage for premium accounts.


Shine Colcol

SafetyCulture Staff Writer

Shine has been professionally writing about virtually anything since her internship for a digital publisher of niche blogazines. She is passionate about building a culture of continuous improvement in the environmental, health, safety, and quality space through well-researched, engaging, and impactful content.