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close this bookPublic education in rational drug use: A global survey (WHO/DAP, 1997, 97 p.)
close this folder4. Findings
View the document(introductory text...)
View the document4.1 General characteristics of responding projects
View the document4.2 Project Planning
View the document4.3 Implementation
View the document4.4 Evaluation

4.1 General characteristics of responding projects

Table 1

List of responding countries





Australia (23)





Malaysia (2)

Canada (3)


Mexico (2)



Peru (4)

France (4)

Colombia (2)

Republic of Mauritius

Germany (3)

Côte d’Ivoire

Sierra Leone


El Salvador C.A.

South Africa

Netherlands (4)



New Zealand

India (5)

Thailand (2)

Sweden (5)

Indonesia (2)


Switzerland (3)


Viet Nam

UK (5)


USA (8)

Figures in brackets represent number of responding projects.

Responding countries

Responses were received from 38 different countries: 25 developing and 13 developed (see Table l). A total of 103 questionnaires were received, of which 4 were excluded because they did not meet inclusion criteria. Thus 99 projects were entered in the data base: 37 from developing and 62 from developed countries. The types of implementing organizations, interventions, and target populations varied widely, and followed no particular system.

Only about one-quarter (24.3%) of the reporting projects in developing countries were completed, as were close to half (43.5%) of those from developed countries; the remainder are ongoing. Half (51% developing and 42% developed country projects) lasted or are planned to last more than three years. Other projects lasted from one to two or two to three years (see Annex l). In developed countries, there were some very short projects, lasting less than two months (seven or 11%). These were from the USA, Canada, and Australia, and with the exception of Australia's SHAPE campaign, were all mass-media based public awareness events. However, the four such projects from Australia are part of the national strategy on medications awareness, and should not be considered as isolated activities.

Implementing organizations

Figure 1. Implementing organizations

Implementing organizations are given in Figure 1. In addition to the main listed categories, academic institutions, hospitals, and a self-help group were included in the category “other”.

The above analysis was based on the categories ticked by respondents, and gives only a partial picture. A second breakdown of the organization types, based on title and affiliation, reveals that consumer organizations represent 46% of the implementing organizations in developing countries, and 18% of those from developed countries. Ten projects (16%) from developed countries were implemented by organizations related to the pharmaceutical industry. No developing country projects reported such affiliations. Associations of pharmacists or pharmacies were the main implementing agencies for one developing country project (thus 3%) and 10 (16%) developed country projects.


The majority of projects in both developing and developed countries were national in scope (62/69%). Only 21% of developing and 18% of developed countries targeted urban areas. No project targeted only rural areas.

Language of respondents

Some 60% of developing country questionnaires were completed in English, 30% in Spanish, and 3% in French. Developed country questionnaires were in English in over 90% of cases, with a few French and Dutch, and one Latvian.