Novo Nordisk Pours $6 Billion Into Resolving Wegovy Weightloss Drug Shortage

Demand for weight loss drugs like Wegovy and Ozempic is exploding in the US, and pharmaceutical manufacturer Novo Nordisk is taking leaps and bounds to keep up.

Demand Soars

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Danish pharmaceutical giant Novo Nordisk has had to ramp up production of its ‘miracle’ weight loss drug Wegovy, as demand for the medication has exploded across the US and outpaced supply.

$6.5 Billion Invested

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Now the company has announced plans to invest another $6.5 billion to meet the increased demand and further access to both Wegovy and diabetes medication Ozempic, its two most prolific products.

Delays Are Still Expected

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Senior Vice President Negelle Morris shared the announcement with ABC News, while also warning that delays in supply should still be expected for the time being. 

“Not Like a Light Switch”

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“It’s not like a light switch,” she said. “I think that over time, the investments that we’re making in manufacturing capabilities will ensure that over time we’re able to meet that demand.”

25,000 New Sign-Ups Per Month

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Based on the billion-dollar investment, Novo Nordisk has now been able to flood the market with enough supply to meet 25,000 sign-ups for Wegovy every week. 

“Demand Definitely Outpacing Supply”

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Even with an enormous number of new patients taking the drug, it won’t be enough to stem the flow of requests.  “We recognize that the demand definitely is outpacing the supply that we have,” Morris continued. 

Smallest Doses Restricted

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Currently, the smallest Wegovy doses – from 0.25 to 1 milligram – are decreasing in availability across the country due to high demand, as reported by the US Food and Drug Administration.

Ozempic Fully Available

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Ozempic, on the other hand, is now fully available in all dosages, though it has experienced intermittent shortages for over two years as demand for GLP-1 medications has increased. 

Three New Facilities

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The $6.5 billion is just a part of the investments and expansions being rolled out by Novo. The company has also verified plans to purchase three separate production facilities from pharmaceutical company Catalent. 

$11 Billion Acquisition Under Way

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The acquisition is already underway, with a price tag of $11 billion. It should be complete by the end of the year. 

Huge Year for Novo Nordisk

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It has been an incredible year for Novo, which has seen its US sign-up rates for Wegovy jump by 500% since the beginning of the year.

Revolutionary Drugs

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The company’s creation of semaglutide – a GLP-1 receptor agonist that aids in significant long-term weight loss for certain people – has been hailed as revolutionary in modern medicine, and has made Novo one of the most talked-about companies in the world.

One of the World’s Most Valuable

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As of May, the company has a market cap of $559.69 Billion, making it the 13th most valuable company in the world, and Europe’s most valuable company. 

Criticisms Over Prices

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Wegovy and Ozempic have become so popular and sought after that the company has been on the receiving end of criticisms over its high prices. As well as new supply and investments, Novo will also reduce costs in the coming months.

Volume Opportunity

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“With the volume opportunity we have at hand, that significantly outweighs what we see in terms of lower price points,” said chief executive Lars Fruergaard Jorgensen.

“Working 24/7”

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Morris also expanded on cost reductions and high demand in her ABC interview, saying  “Our manufacturing facilities are working 24/7.”

“We’re Doing Everything We Can”

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“I can absolutely assure America that we’re doing everything that we can, not only to reduce cost and out of pocket in a way that is consistent with the health care system that we have in the U.S, but also to increase supply,” she elaborated. 

A New Approach

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“The plan that we had to be thoughtful and certainly responsible,” Morris added. “But also to increase access to this medication by releasing more of those lower doses, allowing more new patients to start, is something that we’ll continue to work on.”

Price Still An Issue

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While these medications have proven to be broadly effective in combating obesity and type 2 diabetes in the US, their price is still a sticking point for many Americans who need them. 

Exorbitant Monthly Costs

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Americans living with obesity who do not have insurance to cover weight loss medication are currently paying as much as $1000 per person for just one month of treatment. 

The post – Novo Nordisk Pours $6 Billion Into Resolving Wegovy Weightloss Drug Shortage first appeared on Wealthy Living.

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