Sat. Jul 20th, 2024

Packages of the weight-loss drug Wegovy from the pharmaceutical firm Novo Nordisk lie on the gross sales counter in a Danish pharmacy.

Stefan Trumpf | Image Alliance | Getty Pictures

Novo Nordisk launched its Wegovy weight reduction injection within the U.Okay. on Monday, advancing the drug’s rollout in Europe regardless of ongoing provide constraints.

The Danish pharmaceutical large mentioned that the weekly injection can be obtainable initially “by a managed and restricted launch,” with solely sure sufferers eligible to obtain the drug on the nation’s Nationwide Well being Service.

To qualify for therapy, sufferers have to be on the NHS’s weight administration service, have no less than one weight-related situation and have a physique mass index of 35, based on suggestions outlined by the Nationwide Institute for Care and Excellence.

The drug may even be obtainable privately by a “registered healthcare skilled,” Novo Nordisk mentioned in a press release, with out including additional element.

Novo Nordisk declined to reveal the ultimate value agreed with NHS England for the drug, however mentioned that NICE, the U.Okay. drug cost-effectiveness watchdog, had described it as a “cost-effective use of NHS sources.” It added that the associated fee within the non-public market will likely be “decided by licensed prescribers.”

Within the U.S., Wegovy has an inventory value of $1,350 for a month-to-month dose, whereas in Europe it retails for round 170 to 300 euros ($190-$330) per thirty days.

British insurance coverage firm Aviva, which supplies non-public medical insurance to round 1.1 million Brits, on Monday mentioned that Wegovy wouldn’t be lined underneath its coverage, based on Reuters.

‘Carefully monitoring’ provide points

Wegovy’s U.Okay. growth comes simply over a month after the drug launched in Germany — its third European market on the time, after Denmark and Norway.

Surging demand for the load loss drug, in addition to a sequence of medical research which level to its wider well being advantages, have shot the corporate’s shares to file highs. On Friday, it briefly unseated French luxurious items behemoth LVMH to grow to be Europe’s most dear firm.

Provide constraints proceed to weigh heavy on the drug’s rollout, with CEO Lars Fruergaard Jorgensen telling a Reuters Newsmakers occasion final month that it might be “some years” earlier than the corporate can fulfill all customers.

Within the U.Okay., Novo Nordisk mentioned that “a proportion” of obtainable provide can be allotted particularly for NHS therapy, and that the corporate would work with healthcare skilled to make sure that “sufferers with the best unmet medical want” are prioritized.

“We’re carefully monitoring Wegovy demand and are working with regulators and suppliers to make sure individuals residing with weight problems can have entry to and stay on therapy,” it added.

The corporate has additionally restricted provisions in different markets. In Could, it minimize the U.S. provide of starter doses to make sure continuity for current sufferers, whereas in Germany it suggested docs to “prescribe responsibly,” limiting prescriptions to sufferers with medical wants.

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