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Eli Lilly's new website to help patients access weight-loss medicine

After regulators approved Zepbound to help treat obesity, drugmaker Eli Lilly launched a website making it easier to access the drug.
Eli Lilly's new website to help patients access weight-loss medicine
Posted at 8:00 AM, Jan 04, 2024

Drugmaker Eli Lilly has launched a new website with the goal of helping people access medicines for obesity, migraine and diabetes. 

LillyDirect connects patients with health care providers and also assists with home delivery of select Lilly medicines through third-party pharmacies. The medicines are said to ship to homes free of charge. 

The company says LillyDirect "gives patients a simple option to get consistent access to Lilly medicines they have been prescribed with the added convenience of home delivery. By obtaining medicines directly from Lilly, patients can easily access Lilly's affordability solutions and savings card opportunities are automatically applied for patients who qualify."

The new website launched two months after the Food and Drug Administration approved Eli Lilly's new weight loss drug Zepbound. Eli Lilly says that Zepbound uses hormone receptors to help those considered obese or overweight lose weight and keep it off. 

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Eli Lilly said those who took the highest dosage of Zepbound lost an average of 48 pounds after 72 weeks, while those taking the drug's lowest dosage lost an average of 34 pounds. Those given a placebo lost seven pounds after 72 weeks, the company said. 

However, these weight loss drugs do have side effects. Eli Lilly noted that Zepbound can be related to numerous adverse gastrointestinal reactions. The FDA also noted that it is investigating whether the drug can lead to a risk of suicidal ideation and aspiration (the act of having food or drinks go down the wrong tube). 

But Eli Lilly says its weight-loss drug's benefits outweigh the risks for some patients. Trials indicated that those who took the drug and combined it with diet and exercise had improved blood pressure and cholesterol levels. 

"A complex U.S. health care system adds to the burdens patients face when managing a chronic disease. With LillyDirect, our goal is to relieve some of those burdens by simplifying the patient experience to help improve outcomes," said Eli Lilly CEO David A. Ricks. "LillyDirect offers more choices in how and where people access health care, including a convenient home delivery option to fill Lilly medicines they have been prescribed."

Eli Lilly says Zepbound has a list price of $1,059 per monthly dose. Those who have insurance may be eligible to pay as low as $25 for a one-month or three-month prescription, the company says. Those forced to pay out of pocket may be eligible to pay as low as $550 for a one-month prescription. 

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