Ro <> Gelesis: partnering to make Plenity available nationwide

Written by Ro 

Written by Ro 

last updated: Dec 17, 2019

3 min read

Ro recently announced we are partnering with Gelesis, a biotechnology company specializing in overweight and obesity treatment, on the U.S. commercial launch of Plenity™. Through the Gelesis-Ro partnership, Plenity will be the first FDA-cleared weight management aid and first primary care product to launch with both traditional healthcare provider and telehealth services, making it available to patients nationwide.

Why is Ro partnering with Gelesis?

At Ro, we want to help our members address the underlying conditions that can often lead to other serious health issues. We also want to help patients get access to high-quality care and safe and effective treatment, wherever and whenever they need it. That’s why we’re proud to be the first telehealth provider of Plenity, the prescription weight management aid FDA-cleared for the largest number of adults affected by overweight and obesity.

Plenity will be the only weight management treatment available through Ro’s digital clinics as the company expands to treat new conditions on our platform.

Why is obesity a problem Ro wants to help solve?

Today, more than two in three American adults are overweight or obese. This is alarming considering obesity increases a patient’s risk of heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure and cancer. So we asked ourselves, why is this condition undertreated?

Often, patients are embarrassed to talk to their providers about weight management. It has also become increasingly challenging and expensive for patients to access a physician when they need one — on average in the U.S., it takes 29.3 days to make an appointment with your primary care physician, not to mention the growing number of healthcare deserts where quality primary care is nearly impossible to find. On top of all of that, there has been a lack of safe and effective obesity treatment options available for physicians to prescribe.

By partnering with Plenity, Ro will offer high-quality remote care for weight management to those who might not be able to afford or easily reach a physician or pharmacy, or for those who value the discretion and convenience that a platform like ours provides.

Why is Ro offering Plenity?

We chose to offer Plenity because it stood above all other weight loss treatments as the unanimous choice of Ro’s clinical team based on its efficacy and safety profile.

Over the last two years, we have invested in building a “full-stack” infrastructure that allows us to seamlessly integrate a new medication into our national pharmacy network and national physician network.

Because of this, we can give patients access to high-quality treatment in a discreet, personalized way and if safe and appropriate, deliver products like Plenity right to their door.

How does Plenity work?

Made from two natural building blocks, cellulose and citric acid, Plenity uses new and exclusive hydrogel technology to create a non-stimulant, non-addictive weight management aid. Patients take three Plenity capsules with water before lunch and dinner. Plenity absorbs the water and mixes with food in the stomach, leaving the patient feeling full and helping them to eat less. Think of it like eating a big salad before sitting down to every meal; you’re ready to eat, but not as much. It’s surprisingly simple even though the science behind Plenity is incredibly complex.

It’s not only effective, it’s proven and safe, too (read important safety information here). Approximately 60% of adults treated with Plenity in a clinical trial were responders and achieved an average weight loss of 10% of their body weight, about 22 pounds. The most common side effects were fullness, bloating, flatulence and/or abdominal pain. More on Plenity, including important safety information is available here.

Plenity is the only prescription weight management product to be cleared for use by overweight adults with a BMI as low as 25 kg/m2, including those with hypertension or type 2 diabetes. There is no restriction on how long Plenity can be used to assist in weight management. Plenity is designed for overweight and obese adults that have a body mass index of 25–42 kg/m2, and should be combined with diet and exercise for the best results.