Welcome to your weight management program with PlushCare!

Guiding you through your weight loss journey

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What to expect after your first visit

Discuss your health history, health goals, and past treatments with your doctor for personalized metabolic health recommendations.

Common weight loss medications

Check with your insurance provider to determine which medications are covered under your plan.


What are the pros and cons?

Mounjaro®

Pros

  • Improves blood sugar, with average 2.3% reduction in HA1C

  • Average loss of 15% of body weight when combined with diet and exercise

  • Reduces appetite and improves insulin resistance

  • Works great with low-carb, high-protein diets

Cons

  • No long-term safety data yet

  • Gastrointestinal side effects are commonly reported

  • May cause reactions at injection site

  • Regular monitoring of kidney function is needed

What are the pros and cons?

Ozempic®

Pros

  • Average of 12% of body weight loss with exercise and diet

  • Significantly lowers blood glucose levels (1.8% A1C reduction)

  • Works great with low-carb, low-calorie eating and daily moderate exercise

Cons

  • Only indicated for type 2 diabetes

  • Insurance may require prior authorization for each dose increase

  • Requires ongoing use and lifestyle changes for sustained A1C improvement

What are the pros and cons?

Saxenda®

Pros

  • FDA-approved for weight loss and type 2 diabetes

  • Once-a-day injection and easy to stop if there are side effects

  • Average of 5-9% of body weight loss with diet and exercise

  • Works great with low-carb, low-calorie eating and daily moderate exercise

Cons

  • Frequent injections needed

  • More complicated to travel with this medication

  • Requires ongoing use for sustained benefits

  • May cause gastrointestinal discomfort

What are the pros and cons?

Wegovy®

Pros

  • Can help reduce appetite and calorie intake

  • Convenient dosing with once-a-week injection

  • Lose an average of 12% of body weight with diet and exercise over roughly 1 year

Cons

  • May be expensive without insurance coverage

  • Prior authorization may be required with each dose increase

  • Can take a long time for side effects to wear off if you experience them

What are the pros and cons?

Zepbound

Pros

  • Convenient weekly dosing

  • Works well with healthy lifestyle modifications

  • Potentially lowers blood pressure and reduces cholesterol

Cons

  • Long-term safety data not yet known

  • Risk of injection site reactions

  • Associated with potential gastrointestinal side effects

Completing your lab work

After your first appointment, lab work is required to understand your health, determine which medications are safe for you, and allow us to personalize your diet and exercise goals.


  • Which labs are required?

    Labs may include Lipids, CBC, CMP, TSH, HA1C, fasting insulin, height, weight, and blood pressure.


  • How much will these lab tests cost?

    The cost of these labs may differ depending on your insurance coverage. Some insurance plans cover the cost of these labs and some may not. If you elect not to use your insurance for the labs, PlushCare has a discounted cash rate option with Quest Diagnostics and basic weight management labs are $105.

    If you are interested in the discounted cash rate option (i.e. not going through your insurance), please let your physician know that you want to do the discounted cash rate option before they order your labs as you will need to obtain a prepaid lab slip prior to going to the Quest Diagnostics.

  • Where can I complete my labs?

    All of the lab tests we order through our system default to Quest Laboratory Services. If you need to complete your labs elsewhere, please contact your Care Team and they will send you a signed copy of our lab request that you can take to any lab.


  • How do I prepare for my lab tests?

    Please fast for 12 hours before the blood tests. You may drink water, but please avoid black coffee or tea. If you’re taking Biotin, stopping for 3 days before the lab tests is best, as it can change your TSH results.


  • How long after completing my labs will my results be ready?

    Results may take up to 3-5 business days. If you have done your labs and have not heard from us within 5 days, please email or call us to let us know your labs have been done.


  • What if I’ve recently completed these labs?

    If you have completed all the required labs within the past 2 months, please upload your labs when you check in for your second appointment.


    Learn more about the importance of lab tests for weight management.

Verifying your insurance coverage

Contact your insurance company to verify which medication options are covered under your insurance plan and ask if they require prior authorization. Knowing what your plan covers will help you and your doctor identify the best treatment option.

  • How to find out if you have insurance coverage for weight loss medications:

    Insurance companies only cover FDA approved diabetes medications such as Ozempic (semaglutide), Mounjaro (tirzepatide), and Victoza (liraglutide), if you have type 2 diabetes. These same medications are also FDA approved for weight loss, but the weight loss version have different names. 

    The names of the weight loss medications are Wegovy (semalgutide), Zepbound (tirzepatide), and Saxenda (liraglutide).  If you do NOT have type 2 diabetes, you need to ask if your insurance company covers the FDA-approved weight loss medications in order to find out if you have insurance coverage for weight loss treatment.

  • What if I have a BMI of >27 and one weight-related medical condition, or a BMI of >30?

    You should ask about the following FDA approved weight loss medications based on your underlying medical conditions:


  • What if I have Type 2 Diabetes?

    You should ask about the following FDA approved diabetes medications with additional weight loss benefits:



What to expect after your second visit

During your second visit, your doctor will review your lab results, discuss medication options based on your medical conditions and cost, and help you set initial diet and exercise goals. If medications are recommended, your doctor will send a prescription at the end of this visit.

Submitting a prior authorization

Medication Shortages

Compounded Semaglutide

Semaglutide is made and distributed by the pharmaceutical company that makes Ozempic® and Wegovy® and comes in the form of an injection pen.

  • Compounded Semaglutide Overview

    Compounded semaglutide is only made possible if the medication is in shortage. If those branded medications, Ozempic® and Wegovy®, are no longer on the FDA shortage list, compounded semaglutide will no longer be available. Compounded forms of semaglutide are not FDA approved. They usually come in a vial with syringes and are not covered by insurance. PlushCare offers compounded semaglutide for $299 per month.  Patients can submit the cost for reimbursement through their HSA/FSA, but we do not currently accept these cards for the cost of the compounded semaglutide.


    Not every compounding pharmacy is the same and there may be variations of compounded medications per pharmacy. With our preferred compounding pharmacy, the compounded semaglutide is the exact molecular copy of the semaglutide base. The compounded semaglutide from our preferred pharmacy is not a salt form of semaglutide. The authenticity and potency of the compounded semaglutide from our preferred pharmacy are verified by an outside lab as well.


    If your physician prescribed you compounded semaglutide due to the shortage of Ozempic® and Wegovy®, please review these patient instructions for more information regarding dosing and administration of your medication. 


    Learn more about compounded semaglutide here.

  • PlushCare Compounded Semaglutide Dosing information

    Each vial expires 28 days after opening the vial and for safety reasons, any remainder after the 28 days should be discarded.


    The starting dose of this medication is 0.25mg subQ once per week, for 4 weeks. The medication can't be taken more frequently than once every 7 days. 


    It’s important to follow the titration schedule outlined by your doctor. It will help reduce the chance of side effects and help your body safely adjust to the medication. Your dose cannot be increased more frequently than once every 4 weeks.  Sometimes the dose does not need to be increased or is increased more slowly.  Please do NOT increase the dose of medication on your own.  You should see your doctor each month to determine if it's safe to increase and appropriate to increase to the next dose. 


    For any issues regarding medication administration issues (i.e. what happens if the medication is stored improperly, vial malfunction, etc), please contact Strive pharmacy directly at 480-626-4366.


    Please note:
    This service is currently available to residents in the following states: AZ, CA, CO, DC, DE, FL, GA, HI, IA, ID, IL, KS, MA, MD, ME, MO, MT, ND, NE, NH, NM, NV, NY, OH, OK, OR, PA, RI, TN, TX, UT, WA, WY.

    Compounded semaglutide is only available as an alternative to branded Ozempic® and Wegovy® as long as they remain on the FDA drug shortages list. If those branded medications are no longer on the FDA shortage list, compounded semaglutide will no longer be available. Although compounded semaglutide is not FDA-approved, our pharmacy provider complies with pertinent federal and state laws and FDA regulations. Prescriptions are provided at the doctor’s discretion.


    Learn more about our controlled substances policy.

Compounded Tirzepatide

Review important information about this medication below, and ask your doctor if this may be a treatment option for you.

  • Compounded Tirzepatide fills a critical need for treatment when a medication is on a national shortage list. It is a custom-made medication using the same active ingredients in Zepbound™ and Mounjaro® and combined with B12 and glycine.

    It is given in a vial with insulin syringes for injection. The doses are exactly the same as the doses of the retail prescriptions. Titration of this medication follows the same titration as the brand medications.

    Unlike Mounjaro® and Zepbound™, which come in injection pens, our compounded tirzepatide is provided in vials with syringes.

  • Tirzepatide Pricing & Dosing

    The current pricing for compounded tirzepatide is: 

    • $399 for 5mg dose (1 vial) 

    • $599 for 7.5mg or 10mg doses (2 vials) 

    • $749 for 12.5mg or 15mg doses (3 vials) 

    Please note: the starting 2.5mg dose of tirzepatide is not currently on the FDA drug shortage list and is therefore unavailable for compounding through PlushCare at this time. Starting at a higher dose of this medication may cause significant side effects. Review patient instructions for how to administer this medication.

    If you're not currently on tirzepatide, please talk to your doctor about compounded semaglutide or other weight loss options that are available at starting doses. 

    NOTE: This service is currently available to residents in the following states: AZ, CO, DC, DE, FL, GA, HI, IA, ID, IL, KS, MA, MD, ME, MO, MT, ND, NE, NH, NM, NV, NY, OH, OK, OR, PA, RI, TN, TX, UT, WA, WY.

Common Weight Loss Medication FAQs

What to expect after your third visit and beyond

After starting treatment, you’ll meet with your doctor monthly to discuss your progress, adjust medications as needed, and set new diet and exercise goals.

We're excited to help you take the first steps to live a longer, healthier, and happier life.