Frequently Asked Questions

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General

When am I required to request an OARRS report on a patient?
Each board (pharmacy, medical, nursing, dental) has its own rules defining when it is required to obtain an OARRS report on a patient. Refer to your licensing board's rule located under the "PMP Information" tab on the OARRS homepage.
Delegates: How do I add or delete a delegate from my account?
Each person (prescriber, pharmacist, or delegate) must first have their own account. The prescriber/pharmacist will then sign into their own account, click on “related links”, then select “Add/Remove Delegate.” They will see which delegates are currently connected to their account. Select “delete” next to any names you wish to remove from the account. To add a new delegate, enter the OARRS user name of the delegate, then “add”.
Delegates: How many delegates may a prescriber/supervisor have and for how many prescribers/supervisors may a delegate run reports?
A prescriber/supervisor may have as many delegates as they are comfortable supervising in the appropriate use of OARRS. A delegate may be a delegate for multiple prescribers/supervisors.
I cannot remember my password. How do I reset it?
You will be able to unlock your account or reset your password after you complete a short “quiz” that pops up on your computer. This quiz is from a 3rd party vendor. All questions come from public records; the questions are not controlled by the board of pharmacy. Resetting your password in this manner prevents you from needing to call the OARRS department. If you continue to experience issues, you may reach OARRS during regular business hours by calling 614-466-4143 (option 1).
What is this "ID quiz" I am expected to take?
The quiz is an ID verification quiz administered by an outside vendor. The questions all come from public records. The purpose is to protect the integrity of the individual's OARRS account. It is a timed quiz. Do not back out, close, or "refresh" the page as all of those actions will count as one of your attempts in passing the quiz. Read the questions carefully; there are times where "none of the above" really may be the correct answer.
There appears to be an error on the OARRS report.
Call the dispensing pharmacy for all clarifications/corrections. Only they can make corrections to their information. The correction on the prescription must then also be reported by that pharmacy to OARRS.
I run a report and no prescriptions show up, even though I know the patient has had prescriptions filled. What do I do next?
You have several options: 1. Expand the search criteria. Minimum search criteria are name, birth date, and zip code. INCLUDING THE ADDRESS or TELEPHONE NUMBER may get additional information from the database. Adding criteria will never reduce the amount of information the report collects. 2. Verify your search criteria. Check spelling of names, birthdates, and zip code. If the patient is new to your geographic area, rerun the report using the patient’s prior zip code. 3. Call the pharmacy to see how they have spelled the patient’s name or entered the birthdate or zip code. Base your search criteria on that information. 4. We can verify if a specific prescription is in the system. We need the pharmacy DEA, the prescription number, and date of fill. Even though a prescription may have been submitted, if there was an error in the data the prescription is rejected. Errors are reported back to the dispensing pharmacy for correction and resubmission.
Can we use the OARRS report in court?
OARRS reports are not evidence and should not be presented in court. OARRS was designed to be used as a tool for gathering evidence.
Will my password ever expire?
There are two types of password expiration in OARRS. If you are actively using your account on a regular basis, you will only encounter a soft expiration. Every 6 months, the system will require you to change your password. This is a soft expiration. If you do not log into your account for more than 6 months, you will encounter a hard expiration. A hard expiration requires you to complete and pass a short quiz which will then let you select a new password.
Can I request a Patient Rx History Report without registering?
No. All requests for Rx History Reports must be submitted electronically via our website. The resulting report will be delivered electronically via our website.
Can I run a report on a patient who I have treated in the past, but am not currently treating?
Ohio law allows a pharmacist or prescriber to request a Patient Rx History Report solely for the purpose of treatment. If you are no longer treating the patient, you are not authorized to request an OARRS report.
May we set up an “office account” for multiple users to access or establish a single point of contact for all account holders within an office?
While we understand the desire for a single account/single point of contact for multiple people to use, we cannot accommodate this. Each individual must have their own, private user name and password.
Who can I authorize to use my account?
Nobody! Your OARRS account is for your use only. Do not share your password with anyone, including your office staff and/or spouse. To authorize others to access OARRS on your behalf, delegate accounts are available for this purpose. Go to our website and click on the “register” button to start a delegate application. **NOTE** delegates are linked to their supervisors by their user names. Delegates will need to share their user name with their supervisor, but there is no need to ever divulge their personal password to anyone.
Can I run OARRS reports on patients from home or other locations?
You may obtain OARRS reports from any computer. However you are still under HIPAA obligations to protect the patient's information.
Can I run an OARRS report for someone else at my office/pharmacy?
If you also treat the patient, you can request a report on the patient and share the report with others who treat the patient within your office or pharmacy. However, you may not provide a report to someone else solely for their own use. The treating physician/pharmacist should obtain his/her own OARRS account.
Under what circumstances are law enforcement officers permitted to request an Rx History report?
Law enforcement officers are permitted to request Rx History reports on a patient when the patient is the subject of an open investigation involving a drug crime.
The status of a request that I have submitted is “Supervisor Review”, what does this mean (Law Enforcement/Probation Officer)?
Law Enforcement and Probation Officers are required to have each request for a Rx History Report electronically approved by their supervisor. When you see this status, it means that the supervisor linked to the officer account needs to log into OARRS to approve the request.
Why does the Request menu has a “View” option, but not a “Submit” option (Law Enforcement/Probation Supervisor)?
Law Enforcement Supervisors and Probation Supervisors cannot initiate requests for Rx History Reports. All request must be initiated by an officer account. Once the report has been generated, the Supervisor may view it.
How does the Board measure or monitor compliance with OARRS?
We monitor two things.
  * Does the pharmacy or wholesaler report every time?
  * Does the pharmacy or wholesaler report all the data that is required?

OARRS uses the computer to generate a "Failed to Report" list. The computer will match the list of pharmacies who filed a report (including "Zero reports") against our list of pharmacies. Those who failed to report will be contacted. If you have a problem reporting on time, contact the Board office as soon as possible to arrange a mutually agreeable time to report. [See Rule 4729-37-05]

OARRS uses thresholds to measure whether a pharmacy reports all the required data. Atlantic Associates will reject a record that is missing data and is below the threshold. The pharmacy will receive a letter from Atlantic that identifies the rejected records. These prescriptions must be corrected and resubmitted.

Test Files: How can I submit a test file to be sure my system works?
If a pharmacy or a software vendor wishes to submit test files of prescriptions, contact OARRS at pharmacy@ohiopmp.gov

If a wholesaler or pharmacy wishes to submit test files of drug sales, contact OARRS at data@ohiopmp.gov.

Who can register for OARRS?
Prescribers, Pharmacists, Law Enforcement Officers and agents of government entities responsible for licensing and disciplining prescribers can register for OARRS. Non-prescribing licensed healthcare professionals, along with non-licensed office personnel, can register as a delegate of a registered prescriber/pharmacist with the prescriber’s/pharmacist’s approval.
Who can I share OARRS information with?
The OARRS report itself is for your use in treating the patient or conducting a law enforcement investigation. The report should not be provided to anyone outside of your office/pharmacy or to anyone not directly involved in your investigation. However, information found on the report can be discussed with anyone (including the patient) within the bounds of HIPAA and other privacy laws.
Can I keep a copy of the OARRS reports I run (in the patient’s file or otherwise)?
Yes. It is also recommended that you discuss any plans to keep copies of OARRS reports with your legal advisor to ensure that your plans meet any other requirements not directly related to OARRS.
How can an individual get a copy of their own OARRS report?
An individual may request their own OARRS report by completing an application, having it notarized, and presenting the application IN PERSON AT THE BOARD OFFICE in Columbus. The report will be processed as they wait. We will not mail a report, nor can anyone else pick up a report on behalf of an individual. Be sure to call the office before coming in to be sure an OARRS pharmacist is available to process the request.
I’m currently retired/not actively working as a pharmacist/prescriber. May I still apply for an account?
OARRS accounts are designed for health care professionals who are actively working in a capacity where you prescribe, fill prescriptions, counsel patients, or are otherwise involved in primary treatment decisions in your practice of medicine or pharmacy.
I ran an OARRS report and more than one person showed up on the results. What do I do?
Occasionally, 2 people will show up on a single OARRS report. This most often occurs when both parties have the same birth date or same street name or when there are multiple pieces of overlapping information and our computer is unable to isolate one unique patient. This is common with twins and when two people in the same household have the same or similar names (father/son Jr., Joan and John, Michelle/Michael). Call our office at 614-466-4143 (option 1) and we will separate the accounts. We prefer this information come from the prescriber or pharmacy, not the patient.
The report shows a hospital as the prescriber. How do I know who actually wrote the prescription?
Pharmacies report the DEA number of the prescriber to OARRS. For prescribers who are authorized to use the DEA number of hospital/institution in which they work, the DEA number will translate to “Dr. XXX Hospital” on the OARRS report. Call the dispensing pharmacy to determine the actual prescriber. They are required to maintain that information.
The drug is listed as “invalid drug” or “compound”. What does that mean?
Pharmacies report the NDC of the pharmacy. New products with NDCs may not be in our database yet. Compounds do not have a standard NDC. Call the pharmacy; they can tell you what was dispensed. Pharmacies may inform us about new NDCs to add to the database.
How long does it take a prescription to appear on a patient’s OARRS report after being dispensed?
Pharmacies are required to report prescription information to OARRS within one day of the date the drug was dispensed. Taking into account the time required to process that information and prepare it for reporting, the prescription information should be available within a few days of the dispensing date.
Do doctors or dentists who dispense out of their office have to report to OARRS?
Yes. Physicians and dentists who personally furnish OARRS products to their patients, including samples, must report those to OARRS. “Personally furnish” means the product leaves with the patient for the patient to use outside the office. Products administered to a patient while in the office (such as an injection) do not need to be reported.
Sometimes, my request is processed immediately, but occasionally I get a message saying that I will receive an e-mail when the report is ready. Why does this happen?
Because OARRS does not collect a unique patient identifier, such as a driver’s license number or social security number, it uses very specialized logic to determine which prescriptions belong to your patient versus which prescriptions belong to someone else with similar contact information. On occasion (approximately 3% of the time), the system encounters prescriptions that appear to belong to your patient, but meet certain exception criteria that indicate that they may belong to someone else. These requests are manually processed by a pharmacist in the OARRS office.
What if my question is not answered here?
Contact us at info@ohiopmp.gov.

Pharmacies

How do I submit a correction (or reversal) to a report that has already been uploaded to the database?
Reversals should be submitted through your regular pharmacy software dispensing system. In the event your software will not submit a reversal, you may send us a letter. The letter should be written on company letter head or contain the pharmacy stamp or sample of a prescription label. Information must include: 1. Pharmacy name and DEA number 2. Rx number 3. Date of fill that is to be corrected/reversed 4. Patient full name 5. Tell us what to correct (i.e. number of units dispensed, correction to prescriber (include all DEA numbers of prescribers, etc). 6. Letter needs to be signed by the Responsible Pharmacist (or PIC) for that specific location. You may send this letter to info@ohiopmp.gov or fax to 614-644-8556.
Do I have to report what the physician dispenses from the emergency department?
Yes. If an ER/ED prescriber personally furnishes an OARRS drug it must be reported as dispensing to an outpatient.
What has to be reported?
Every controlled substance dispensed to an outpatient must be reported, including occasional or sporadic dispensing. Reporting must be done within one day of the dispense. On days when there is no dispensing of any reportable drug, the pharmacy will file a “zero report.” Use the web site. Zero Reports are available in the Pharmacy Rx menu.
We are always closed on certain days of the week. Must I submit a zero report for those days, too?
Yes. You may mark “business days closed” in the Pharmacy Rx menu portion of your data upload account. A “zero report” will be generated automatically for those days.
What if my pharmacy NEVER dispenses a controlled substance to an outpatient?
To request an exemption from OARRS reporting, send a letter of explanation to the Ohio State Board of Pharmacy, ATTN OARRS. Please include your TDDD # and DEA #. If your situation changes and you do dispense a reportable medication, you must report. Exemptions must be renewed with each renewal of the terminal distributor license.
We dispense as part of a clinical drug trial. Do we have to report?
Yes, clinical trials must report product that is given to patients for them to take home with them. In lieu of an NDC, any investigational material would be reported with an NDC of eleven zeros (00000-0000-00). This will indicate to a PMP user that the patient is involved in a clinical trial. Drug information is blinded.
Can a prescriber use the DEA number of a hospital?
Yes, however the hospital is required to assign him/her a suffix. The suffix must be shown on the prescription. (Rule 4729-17-13) If the prescriber has their own DEA, then that DEA should be used.
How do I report a compounded prescription?
Report the NDC number(s) only for the controlled substance ingredient(s).
If a non-scheduled drug still has to be reported into OARRS, can I put those drugs into schedule V so they will be reported with the other controlled substances?
Yes, this is one option. However, this subjects the pharmacist to all the other C-V rules imposed by their computer software. Since C-V prescriptions are not subject to the "5 times in 6 months" refill restriction, the only concern is that carisoprodol and tramadol will be included in the daily logs of controlled substances. The Board staff will not cite pharmacies for this recordkeeping issue. Thus, pharmacies or vendors may classify these substances as C-V substances for purposes of complying with OARRS reporting, if they wish. DEA (Columbus) has also indicated this is not a problem for them. Alternatively, you may create a schedule 6 or schedule 7 category for these drugs.
My pharmacy is selling/transfering product to another pharmacy or prescriber. Does that have to be reported?
Yes. Any transfer of a controlled substance between two different DEA numbers must be reported as a wholesale transaction, even if just one tablet. Wholesale quantities are reported by the number of packages, not the number of tablets. Fractional quantities are allowed. For example, you sell 1 bottle of 100 tablets of drug X. You would report "1" as the quantity. If you sell 50 tablets of the bottle of 100, you would report quantity of 0.5.
How do I know if my patients qualify as inpatients and therefore I do not have to report?
Prescriptions dispensed to inpatients are not required to be reported.
Inpatient is defined in Rule 4729-17-01 as a patient in a
(1) Hospital;
(2) Convalescent home;
(3) Developmental facility;
(4) Long term care facility;
(5) Nursing home;
(6) Psychiatric facility
(7) Rehabilitation facility; or
(8) Mental retardation facility.
These are licensure categories and are not open to interpretation.

If a pharmacy dispenses to patients in a facility with multiple license categories, they may report only the prescriptions issued to patients in facilities not on this list (e.g. assisted living). If they cannot separate the prescriptions that must be reported from the rest, they should report everything.

What if some of my patients are inpatients and some are outpatients?
If you can separate the prescriptions, report only those for outpatients. If not, report everything.
Do I have to report prescriptions for animals?
Yes. Veterinary prescriptions must be reported.
How do I report a prescription for an animal?
* Name, address, and telephone number of the owner must be reported.
* Identification of the animal must be included in your prescription record but does not have a separate field in OARRS reporting.
* The date of birth can be an estimate or the owner's date of birth can be used.
* The gender must be included - M or F. Can be the gender of the animal or the owner.
Be consistent. Use one system or the other for birthdate and gender.

When do I have to report prescriptions?
All prescriptions must be reported within 24 hours of being dispensed.
What if the patient has no telephone number?
Use the area code of the pharmacy then zeroes for the phone number. [E.g. in Columbus a pharmacist would use 6140000000]
What if the prescriber has NO DEA number (e.g. APN, PA or other prescriber without his or her own DEA number)?
Use USPS state code + Professional License # or USPS state code + "Certificate To Prescribe" # (e.g. OH12345, MI9876543, KY456789). Leave out the period in Ohio medical license number or special characters in other licenses.
What if the patient’s address is out of the USA?
If the patient’s address is in Canada, enter the 2 letter Province code for the State code and the Canadian postal code. [e.g. Toronto is in the Province of Ontario so state = ON and one of the postal codes is M4J 4H3] If the patient’s address is in any other country, enter the two letter country code from the IRS table and 99990 for the zip code. Country codes can be found at http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-efile/14_-_country_codes.pdf [e.g. Kuwait is KU and the zipcode used will be 99990]
What is the difference between payment type “Commercial PBM insurance” and “Major Medical”?
Most insurance plans today are commercial PBM insurance. For OARRS purposes, we will not distinguish between the two categories. Therefore, it does not matter which of these two types you report for prescriptions paid by insurance.
What is the payment code for Medicaid Managed Care patients?
Code as Medicaid
What if the patient is Dual Eligible (Medicare + Medicaid)?
Code as Medicare
What if the prescription is free, such as a coupon or charitable pharmacy?
Code as "Private Pay"
What if I document my sales to physicians in the computer as a prescription?
A prescription cannot be used to document the sale of a drug to a healthcare provider, another pharmacy, a lab, etc. [21 CFR 1306.06(b) and OAC 4729-5-30] In addition, a prescription number must be assigned only to a patient specific record. [OAC 4729-5-19] A pharmacy may utilize the computer to track sales of drugs for inventory purposes if the sales records are separated from the prescriptions by using a separate numbering system, separate file, or other similar system.

Wholesale Distributors

What if the sale is just an emergency? Do I have to report every sale?
A wholesaler or pharmacy must report every sale or other distribution (e.g. samples, transfer) of a controlled substance to a pharmacy, hospital or prescriber’s office. Wholesalers are NOT required to report the transfer of product to another wholesaler/manufacturer.
Do I have to report the distribution of samples?
Yes, wholesalers and manufacturers must report the distribution of samples of any controlled substance. Pharmacies, hospitals, etc. are forbidden to have samples. They are a prescriber only item. Therefore, this question applies to wholesalers, manufacturers, etc. that supply samples.
Do I have to report 1:1 drug replacements to EMS/Ambulance Services?
True 1:1 replacement of a drug box or single dose does NOT need to be reported. However, other distributions (e.g. five diazepam syringes) or a controlled substance, carisoprodol product, or tramadol product to an ambulance service must be reported.
When do I have to report sales to prescribers?
Sales reports should be submitted monthly by the 15th of the following month. [Eg. Sales for August 2015 should be reported by September 15, 2015][ORC 4729-37-07]
What if a licensed wholesaler does not distribute any Controlled Substances in Ohio?
Send a letter of explanation to the Ohio State Board of Pharmacy, ATTN OARRS. Please include your WDDD # and DEA #.
My pharmacy is selling/transfering product to another pharmacy or prescriber. Does that have to be reported?
Yes. Any transfer of a controlled substance between two different DEA numbers must be reported as a wholesale transaction, even if just one tablet. Wholesale quantities are reported by the number of packages, not the number of tablets. Fractional quantities are allowed. For example, you sell 1 bottle of 100 tablets of drug X. You would report "1" as the quantity. If you sell 50 tablets of the bottle of 100, you would report quantity of 0.5.
What if the seller or purchaser has NO DEA number?
Use USPS state code + Professional License # or USPS state code + "Certificate To Prescribe" # (e.g. OH12345, MI9876543, KY456789). Leave out the period in Ohio medical license number or special characters in other licenses.
What if I document my sales to physicians in the computer as a prescription?
A prescription cannot be used to document the sale of a drug to a healthcare provider, another pharmacy, a lab, etc. [21 CFR 1306.06(b) and OAC 4729-5-30] In addition, a prescription number must be assigned only to a patient specific record. [OAC 4729-5-19] A pharmacy may utilize the computer to track sales of drugs for inventory purposes if the sales records are separated from the prescriptions by using a separate numbering system, separate file, or other similar system.
What sales must be reported?
Every sale must be reported even though the quantity is less than the 5 percent threshold required for a license. For example, if a pharmacy transfers any quantity of a controlled substance to a physician, clinic, ambulance service, etc. the transaction must be reported even though it is only one time and the pharmacy does not need a wholesale distributor license from the Board.

ASAP 2005 Programming

How do I report a compounded prescription?
Report the NDC number(s) only for the controlled substance ingredient(s).
The ASAP 2005 Implementation Guide uses an asterisk (*) as the delimiter in each example. What if our data contains the asterisk character? Will this cause problems when parsing the file?
Yes. If the character used as the delimiter appears in the text of your data, it will cause problems during parsing. Even though the ASAP 2005 Implementation Guide always uses the asterisk character as the delimiter, the format allows the programmer to choose a delimiter of his/her choice in order to avoid characters that are used in the text of the data. This character is determined by the third character of the data file.
What if the patient has no telephone number?
Use the area code of the pharmacy then zeroes for the phone number. [E.g. in Columbus a pharmacist would use 6140000000]
How do I report a prescription for an animal?
* Name, address, and telephone number of the owner must be reported.
* Identification of the animal must be included in your prescription record but does not have a separate field in OARRS reporting.
* The date of birth can be an estimate or the owner's date of birth can be used.
* The gender must be included - M or F. Can be the gender of the animal or the owner.
Be consistent. Use one system or the other for birthdate and gender.

What if the prescription is free, such as a coupon or charitable pharmacy?
Code as "Private Pay".
What is the difference between payment type “Commercial PBM insurance” and “Major Medical”?
Most insurance plans today are commercial PBM insurance. For OARRS purposes, we will not distinguish between the two categories. Therefore, it does not matter which of these two types you report for prescriptions paid by insurance.
What is the payment code for Medicaid Managed Care patients?
Code as Medicaid.
What if the patient is Dual Eligible (Medicare + Medicaid)?
Code as Medicare
What if the prescriber has NO DEA number (e.g. APN, PA or other prescriber without his or her own DEA number)?
Use USPS state code + Professional License # or USPS state code + "Certificate To Prescribe" # (e.g. OH12345, MI9876543, KY456789). Leave out the period in Ohio medical license number or special characters in other licenses.