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Demand for Novo Nordisk’s Wegovy Outstripping Supply

According to a report by Bloomberg, the demand for Novo Nordisk’s Wegovy, the first new obesity drug approved in seven years, is exceeding supply.

The weekly injection, approved by the FDA in June, works by decreasing a person’s appetite and has been shown in clinical trials to help people lose an average of 15 percent of their body weight. 

“Demand is strong. It’s of course unfortunate that we can’t help all patients,” Lars Fruergaard Jørgensen, Novo Nordisk’s CEO, said Nov. 3, according to Bloomberg

He said Novo Nordisk is working through supply constraints and should be able to meet demand by early next year. Analysts expect Wegovy to become a blockbuster drug next year and reach annual revenues of $3.2 billion in 2024, Bloomberg reported. The drug costs $1,000 to $1,500 per month.

An estimated 1 billion people worldwide are expected to be considered obese by 2025, Bloomberg reported. Obesity has reached epidemic proportions globally, with at least 2.8 million people dying each year as a result of being overweight or obese. Once associated with high-income countries, obesity is now also prevalent in low- and middle-income countries. Overweight and obesity are defined as “abnormal or excessive fat accumulation that may impair health”

Body mass index (BMI) – the weight in kilograms divided by the square of the height in meters (kg/m2) – is a commonly used index to classify overweight and obesity in adults. WHO defines overweight as a BMI equal to or more than 25, and obesity as a BMI equal to or more than 30.

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