Corporate Compliance

Tip: How to detect and prevent financial fraud

Compliance Monitor, May 11, 2005

It's critical to stay on top of your organization's financial statements to detect and prevent manipulation and financial fraud. Here are four key steps you can take to maintain financial control.

  • Recognize why financial misrepresentations occur. Sometimes statements can be misstated because of deficiencies in procedures or because senior management deliberately misrepresents statements to enhance the financial performance.

  • Stay in tune with the hospital's financial operations by monitoring its financial condition, as well as determining how money comes in and where it is spent.

  • Watch for and investigate variances in accounts. For example, note if a line item is different one month from what it usually is.

  • Forge relationships with financial staff. Do more than analyze data and be sure to develop relationships with and learn the policies and procedures of the accounting and finance departments.

    Look for next week's issue when we go over four more important steps toward preventing financial fraud.

    The above tip is an excerpt from the book "Hospital Auditing and Monitoring: Sample Programs for Key Risk Areas." Copyright 2004 by HCPro, Inc. This book is a step-by-step, practical manual that offers sample audit programs for the most troublesome areas that a hospital must audit. The binder and CD-ROM are filled with actual audit programs used by auditors and compliance officers in the field. Click here for more information or to order your copy today.

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