Wegovy, an injectable drug known to suppress appetite, may soon be available to people with obesity and weight-related issues through certain NHS specialist weight management services, in addition to some private clinics.
Despite the current global scarcity of this medication, efforts are underway to make it available to those in need.
As Wegovy becomes increasingly accessible, it is anticipated to benefit tens of thousands of individuals, according to NHS representatives.
The exact cost implications for the NHS remain undisclosed.
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What is Wegovy?
It contains the active ingredient semaglutide and works by tricking the body into feeling full – also known as supressing appetite – thereby reducing food intake.
It is essential to note that this medication is not a miracle cure. A low-sugar, real-food diet and regular exercise is vital.
Clinical trials have revealed that discontinuation of the treatment might lead to weight regain.
How can I get Wegovy?
The exact quantity and cost of Wegovy stocks for the NHS are yet to be determined.
The medication, which is self-administered through weekly injections, has a variable list price ranging between £73.25 and £175.80, depending on the dosage.
Qualifying patients may receive prescriptions for up to two years through specialist weight-management services, accompanied by guidance on diet and exercise.
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As well as the NHS and weight management services, several high street pharmacies and private medical providers are preparing to offer Wegovy to their clients, complete with prescribing and dispensing services.
An NHS spokesperson highlighted their dedication to initiating weight management guidance as per NICE recommendations, despite the global supply challenges:
“Around 50,000 eligible patients in England could be prescribed Wegovy through NHS specialist weight management services, that are able to provide appropriate multidisciplinary care.”