Unit of competency details

HLTPHA013 - Order, maintain and distribute pharmaceutical stock (Release 1)


Usage recommendation:
Supersedes HLTPHA004 - Order, maintain and distribute pharmaceutical stockNon Equivalent. Unit code and terminology updated. Changes to performance criteria, performance evidence and assessment conditions. 24/Nov/2022

Release Status:
ReleaseRelease date
1 1 (this release) 25/Nov/2022


SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 089901 Purchasing, Warehousing And Distribution  

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 089901 Purchasing, Warehousing And Distribution  08/Feb/2023 
The content being displayed has been produced by a third party, while all attempts have been made to make this content as accessible as possible it cannot be guaranteed. If you are encountering issues following the content on this page please consider downloading the content in its original form

Unit of competency

Modification History

Not applicable.


This unit of competency describes the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to maintain a pharmaceutical stock control system and distribute pharmaceutical products.

This unit applies to hospital or health services pharmacy assistants and technicians working under the supervision of an authorised person.

The skills in this unit must be applied in accordance with Commonwealth and State or Territory legislation, Australian standards and industry codes of practice.

No occupational licensing, certification or specific legislative requirements apply to this unit at the time of publication.

Pre-requisite Unit


Competency Field


Unit Sector


Elements and Performance Criteria



Elements describe the essential outcomes

Performance criteria describe the performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element.

1. Procure stock.

1.1. Identify items and quantity required for order, according to predetermined minimum and maximum stock levels.

1.2. Obtain requisition requirements as per the imprest schedule from authorised personnel.

1.3. Provide order information in terms of availability and cost to an authorised person according to organisational policies and procedures.

1.4. Interpret information to identify availability and cost of item and provide information to an authorised person.

1.5. Investigate alternative suppliers or products when required medication is not available due to compounding delays or externally sourced compounded products under the guidance of a health care professional.

2. Process new stock.

2.1. Accept delivery of stock and match delivery documentation with stock delivered.

2.2. Check condition of stock and expiry date and report deviations to the appropriate person.

2.3. Reconcile stock with order or control lists and report discrepancies to the appropriate person.

2.4. Inform an authorised person of medication with specific recording requirements according to legal requirements and organisational policies and procedures.

2.5. Maintain batch traceability.

2.6. Accurately complete data capture requirements, including reconciliation of statements and invoices.

2.7. Comply with organisation procedures to return stock to supplier as required.

3. Handle and maintain stock.

3.1. Maintain principles of sale selection and storage of medication.

3.2. Store stock according to stock storage and rotation requirements.

3.3. Maintain conditions to minimise risk of contamination.

3.4. Monitor stock on a regular basis, including minimum and maximum stock levels, and report deviations to the appropriate person.

3.5. Monitor and maintain correct storage requirements and report deviations to the appropriate person.

3.6. Maintain accurate location maps.

3.7. Check security compliance and report irregularities to the appropriate person.

4. Select and pack item order.

4.1. Select and pack items according to order requirements.

4.2. Complete data entry requirements associated with processing orders.

4.3. Check labelling, specific handling instructions and delivery information for accuracy in line with identified requirements.

4.4. Check packaging is completed according to specific instructions.

5. Dispatch orders.

5.1. Check delivery documentation for accuracy and follow requirements.

5.2. Implement packaging and handling procedures to ensure the security, integrity, cold chain maintenance and breakage avoidance of delivered goods.

5.3. Complete medication registers and other documentation accurately, as required.

6. Process returned stock.

6.1. Inspect returned products for their expiry date and integrity, and place in designated area.

6.2. Place reusable returned stock in appropriate designated area.

6.3. Dispose of unusable returned items according to organisation procedure.

6.4. Complete inspection documentation accurately and forward for authorisation.

6.5. Maintain accurate records and complete credit process in a timely manner.

7. Assist in stocktaking procedures.

7.1. Check stock lists of all items for stocktaking.

7.2. Reconcile actual stock against stock lists.

7.3. Count stock and check expiry dates.

7.4. Identify stock discrepancies and report to the appropriate person.

7.5. Determine minimum and maximum stock levels and report to the appropriate person.

7.6. Complete and maintain accurate stocktake documentation.

Foundation Skills

Foundation skills essential to performance are explicit in the performance criteria of this unit of competency.

Unit Mapping Information

Supersedes and is not equivalent to HLTPHA004 Order, maintain and distribute pharmaceutical stock.


Companion Volume implementation guides are found in VETNet - https://vetnet.gov.au/Pages/TrainingDocs.aspx?q=ced1390f-48d9-4ab0-bd50-b015e5485705


Assessment requirements

Modification History

Not applicable.

Performance Evidence

Evidence of the ability to complete tasks outlined in elements and performance criteria of this unit in the context of the job role, and:

  • follow procurement procedures and accurately complete the task for at least 10 orders including externally sourced compounded products
  • follow stock control and maintenance procedures for pharmaceutical imprest stock
  • follow workplace distribution procedures for at least 5 batches of pharmaceutical imprest stock
  • identify issues outside scope of own practice and refer to an authorised person
  • perform the activities outlined in the performance criteria of this unit during a period of at least 240 hours of work related to hospital or health services pharmacy support in a clinical workplace environment. These 240 hours may be applied collectively across all units of competency that include the requirement for workplace hours for the purposes of assessment.

Knowledge Evidence

Demonstrated knowledge required to complete the tasks outlined in elements and performance criteria of this unit:

  • National, State or Territory legal and ethical requirements for pharmaceutical stock management, and how these are applied in organisations, including:
  • codes of conduct
  • duty of care and implications of negligence
  • privacy, confidentiality and disclosure
  • records management
  • rights and responsibilities of workers, employers and patients
  • specific legislation:
  • medication and their use
  • the practice of pharmacy
  • different schedules of medication and pharmaceutical products
  • work role boundaries including responsibilities and limitations
  • work health and safety
  • key information in standard pharmaceutical references and their use by pharmacy assistants, including:
  • Australian Pharmaceutical Formulary Handbook (APF)
  • Monthly Index of Medical Specialities (MIMS) or AusDI Advanced
  • Australian Medicines Handbook (AMH)
  • Micromedex
  • product identification and handling, including those for:
  • formulary medication and non-formulary medication
  • products with the required integrity as well as those whose integrity has been compromised
  • routine of handling products and products requiring special handling
  • packaging and transport specifications
  • principles of procurement of pharmaceutical products including:
  • central supply systems and tender processes
  • purpose and process of purchasing contracts
  • sources of stock, including non-formulary items, Special Access Scheme (SAS) items and S19A imported substitutes for medication shortages
  • sources to determine legitimate receivers of stock
  • stock ordering processes and systems
  • storage requirements for different types of stock:
  • environmental conditions
  • rotation requirements
  • principles and procedures of stock control and maintenance including:
  • input and access of data relevant to stock control
  • financial implications of stock level control
  • maintaining security of pharmaceutical products
  • purpose of batch numbering and expiry dates on pharmaceutical items
  • procedures for dealing with alerts and company recalls
  • different methods of disposal of unwanted pharmaceutical products and outdated stock
  • procedures for dealing with returned stock
  • infection control principles and their relevance to pharmaceutical stock control.

Assessment Conditions

Skills must be demonstrated in the workplace with the addition of simulations and scenarios where the full range of contexts and situations have not been provided in the workplace.

Assessment must ensure access to:

  • use of suitable facilities, equipment and resources, including:
  • stock reporting and data systems
  • prescriptions and medication orders
  • pharmaceutical references
  • modelling of industry operating conditions, including time constraints for stock control activities
  • authorised person with whom to consult.

Assessors must satisfy the Standards for Registered Training Organisations’ requirements for assessors.


Companion Volume implementation guides are found in VETNet - https://vetnet.gov.au/Pages/TrainingDocs.aspx?q=ced1390f-48d9-4ab0-bd50-b015e5485705