Few countries maintain drug price controls and the tendency is to a decrease in their number. In fact, there has been a general increase in prices which in many cases exceeded 100 per cent (Chile, Ecuador, Honduras, Peru and Venezuela). Moreover, there are substantial price differences for the same drug between countries. This fact is noteworthy, considering the marked dependence on the same suppliers. A trend towards an increase both in non-prescription drugs and their availability in outlets with no pharmacist in charge (supermarkets), is now evident.
To compensate for this, some neighbourhood and consumer organizations, who have created local apothecaries and pharmacies, advise on essential drugs and rational use.