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Counting your losses: medicines audits in practice
  1. John Macfarlane and
  2. Rachel Robson


It has been estimated that shrinkage of veterinary purchases – that is, the difference between what is bought and sold – is in the order of 5 to 10 per cent. XLVets' key performance indicator data suggest that medicines sales per vet by sector are £81,500 (small animal), £147,000 (farm animal) and £44,500 (equine); 10 or even 5 per cent of these amounts would create a significant loss to the bottom line of any business. The only way of revealing the true extent of these losses in your practice is to conduct a full medicines audit, and this must be adopted as a regular feature of stock management. In this article, John Macfarlane and Rachel Robson describe how to carry out a medicines audit.

Statistics from


  • Further information

    • EU Directive 2001/82/EC. Community code relating to veterinary medicinal products

    • Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001

    • Misuse of Drugs Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2002

    • Veterinary Medicines Regulations 2009

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