POLL: Should the NHS be offering drugs for weight loss?

Michael Gove says Government need to 'tackle' obesity

A weight-loss drug is being made available to Britons on the NHS as part of a “controlled and limited launch” from September 4.

The weekly jab Wegovy, also known as semaglutide, can help patients lose 15 percent of their body weight and will be prescribed by specialist NHS weight management services.

It will be made available to individuals with a body mass index (BMI) of more than 30 and at least one weight-related co-morbidity alongside a controlled calorie and exercise diet plan. Some private pharmacies have the drug listed for sale for up to £300 per dose.

Once fully rolled out, estimates suggest up to 50,000 people could be prescribed the drug annually by 2027/28. 

Writing in the Daily Express earlier this week, Health Secretary Steve Barclay said the “game-changer” jab will help ease pressure on the ailing health service.

READ MORE: Brand new miracle weight loss jab shall save lives and cut £6.5bn obesity bill


He wrote: “Thousands of people who want to make a real change to their health stand to benefit,” he says. “That is thousands of patients who could avoid potentially life-threatening illnesses linked to obesity and thousands more of families and friends able to enjoy more quality time with a loved one.

“As well as helping people lead longer and healthier lives, tackling obesity will also aid us to continue cutting waiting lists, which is one of the Prime Minister’s five priorities for this Government.”

Manufacturer Novo Nordisk said that the launch of the drug in the UK “will help provide an additional option to support people living with obesity” but confirmed that the drug is in short supply and is expected “to be constrained for the foreseeable future”.

An NHS spokesperson said: “Despite global supply constraints, NHS England is taking action to begin implementing Nice guidance for weight management, while at the same time working to restore supplies of this class of drug for people with type 2 diabetes.”

So what do YOU think? Should the NHS be offering drugs for weight loss? Vote in our poll and join the debate in the comment section below.

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