LloydsPharmacy has today launched a new medicated weight loss service to help reduce rising obesity levels in the UK.
The new programme, which is now available in over 1400 LloydsPharmacy branches, focuses on helping people living with obesity to lose weight and reduce their risk of developing weight-related comorbidities.
LloydsPharmacy is the first community pharmacy multiple to deliver this medicated programme nationwide, with eligible patients receiving a weight loss treatment (which works to decrease appetite), regular consultations with a pharmacist and fully personalised digital health coaching.
Mark Weston, B2B services manager at McKesson UK, parent company of LloydsPharmacy, said: “Obesity is becoming more and more prevalent in the UK and is contributing to increasing NHS cost and capacity challenges. With a renewed focus from the government to reduce levels of this chronic condition, we want our pharmacists to be able to utilise their skills more by being part of the solution. This new service is about safely supporting patients through a medicated weight loss journey to help benefit their overall health and reduce their risk of developing serious conditions associated with being overweight.”
Patients are required to book an initial consultation with a healthcare advisor to verify their eligibility for the service. They must have a BMI of above 30 or a BMI of 27+ with a weight related comorbidity to qualify. If deemed suitable, the patient makes an appointment for a full consultation where a pharmacist will carry out a health check, which includes taking the patient’s heart rate, and talking them through how to use their medication.
Mark continues: “Historically, weight loss medications have been available through online pharmacies and aesthetic clinics with little regulation or rigour. We believe providing the right guidance and care is just as important as the medication itself and have designed a holistic service with this in mind. We want patients to feel fully supported throughout the programme which is why they’ll receive weekly telephone calls during the first four weeks followed by monthly face to face consultations. Like with everything we do, the safety of our patients is our number one priority.”
As part of the programme, patients get free and exclusive access to a personal Health Coach through LIVA Healthcare for as long as they stay on the medication, up to 12 months. They will receive 121 support that focuses on sustainable behaviour and lifestyle change through healthy eating and exercise. The app-based programme also means they can access advice and support at any time of the day, from any location.
Mark adds: “Statistics show that when weight medications are taken as part of a structured programme, up to 65% of patients lose at least 5%, with a significant proportion achieving 10% weight loss. We believe this service can add real value to the lives of our patients by helping them to make positive and long-term lifestyle changes which will not only benefit them but the NHS too.”