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Over 10,000 Improperly Marked Drugs Seized From Los Cabos Pharmacies

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Hugs, pugs, and chicken nugs are all better options than taking drugs. At least that’s what my high school teacher used to say.

The truth is some of us actually need drugs and have a prescription to back it up.

In fact, that’s why Mexico’s border towns have become notorious for endless pharmacies lining the streets to save prices on what is often quite costly in the U.S.

pharmacy in san jose del cabo

Los Cabos is far from a border town, but many vacationers take advantage of convenient pharmacies near their resorts, just as they would in Ciudad Juarez or Tijuana, for example.

Whatever you need, they always seem to have it in stock. However, tourists may start having second thoughts about visiting pharmacies in Los Cabos.

After a recent raid, over 10,000 improperly marked drugs were seized by Mexican authorities leaving many wondering if Cabo pharmacies are safe.


pharmacy advertisement at los cabos marina

Even as luxurious as Los Cabos is for vacations, the popular beach destination is no stranger to sanitation issues.

With tourists and locals both complaining of foul odors, which have since been treated, the latest pharmacy investigations have resulted in more than just drug seizures.

The Comisión Federal para la Protección contra Riesgos Sanitarios, or more commonly known as COFEPRIS, worked in cohesion with other agencies to look into the region’s pharmacies.

Over 100 visits took place to 40 different establishments. While roughly 40% didn’t meet the mark in a variety of ways, sanitation was on the low end of concerns with only a single pharmacy not having proper protocols for their equipment and facilities.

pharmacy storefronts in cabo

Suspensions And Inconsistencies

During these investigations, authorities were on the lookout for anything that could put customers in harm’s way.

It seems as if many pharmacies have taken the cheap way out by trying to save nickels and dimes rather than honor what is listed.

This strategy didn’t bode well for them as now dozens of businesses have been suspended. What shouldn’t be overlooked is many pharmacies run an honest business, but the pharmaceutical industry is often conniving and has a dark underbelly.

pharmacy in los cabos

Tourists will have limited options for the time being as 18 different pharmacies have been fully suspended, while another 15 have been partially suspended.

Out of the 100 investigations, a total of 6 saw administrative inconsistencies, making the establishment much more difficult to examine.

10,000 Improperly Marked Medications

Pharmacies tend to have a vast inventory offering name-brand medications and generics. Here in Los Cabos, tourists often seek out more expensive medications found in the States.

tourists shopping in los cabos

In a popular vacation destination like Los Cabos, tourists are an easy target to dupe. Fortunately for them, the authorities are not so easy.

Many pharmacies have been caught red-handed, resulting in a major loss to them, according to insurance estimates.

Exactly 10,619 individual medications were seized because they were purposely misleading customers, who weren’t so easily fooled after all.

Los Cabos authorities claim customers’ suspicion led to the thousands of improperly marked drugs.

Not The First Go-Around

los cabos tourists on beach

Travelers are often warned of being scammed before going on vacation in Mexico.

It’s no different for Los Cabos, especially since this is not exactly a first time offense. Somehow the same pharmacies skimped around being caught in late 2023 with accusations of fake drugs being found.

6 months later, here we are in the same conversation with much different results. The L.A. Times had initially reported findings of counterfeit drugs, but nothing ever changed between now and then, except for the fact pharmacies flat-out denied the claims.

cabo sign on sunny day

Now that over 10,000 drugs have been seized recently, this is a game-changer for Los Cabos tourists not knowing who to trust.

As of now, no businesses’ names have been released to identify which pharmacies were tricking their customers.

Those vacationing in Los Cabos may want to skip out on making pharmacy runs this trip and enjoy all the fun excursions, incredible beaches, and immaculate resorts instead.

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Robert Corkrum

Thursday 7th of March 2024

re:sanitation,I live in S.J.D.C. and for the last 4 months we have had to drive thru SEWER WATER on the road into the plaza and downtown!!!

robert corkrum

Wednesday 6th of March 2024

I thought it was common knowledge among the locals that a large % of drugstores sell illegal and legal sometimes fake crap from China.Since Mexico does a large business with Communist China and China selling trillions of $$ of illegal drugs to Mexico.Maybe this should scare the H785L out of tourists.I visited Mexico city recently and saw lots of cars made in Communist China on their roads.