It’s Time You Get in the Game as a Weight Loss Coach
By Dr. Nicolette Mathey

To say that COVID-19 has not been kind is the understatement of our lifetimes. In addition to taking the lives of more than 100,000 Americans, the suggested approach to stop the spread of the virus by quarantining in our homes has had a variety of other ill-fated consequences. One of the physical (and most visible) effects of confinement that many of us have experienced is rapid weight gain.

Science tells us that stress causes our bodies to produce added hormones that lead us to eat more than we’d like. For many of us, the last three months have been the most stressful we’ve ever had. With half of all Americans reportedly trying to lose weight before the pandemic struck, it stands to reason that even more people will be looking to shed a few unsightly pounds on the other side of it.

We recently wrote about how ATRIUM24 can help you maximize your business opportunities with five unique strategies, and now we’re going to focus on another. As one of your town’s friendly local pharmacists, now is the time to carve out a niche as a weight loss coach and specialist for your patients.

Why weight loss coaching?

The better question is, why not? If you’ve read any of our recent blog posts, you’ve probably picked up on the fact that ATRIUM24 believes pharmacists should do more than just fill prescriptions. The job of a pharmacist is to help people, and this is an area where we can truly make a difference in our patients’ lives (and health).

We’ve already talked about how it is the perfect time to institute a weight loss coaching program since patients are coming off quarantine and venturing back out into the real world for the first time in months. Many gyms have reopened, and a mindset of physical fitness is starting to return. Don’t wait for the new year to begin a new offering that your patients can benefit from today.

How to implement a weight loss coaching program in your pharmacy

As you’ve seen with our new Cash Clinical program featuring the insights of TW Taylor and Jamie Reid from the Williamsburg Drug Company, we love shining a spotlight on our member pharmacies. While the concept of pharmacists becoming health or weight loss coaches is hardly a new concept, few have done it better than Chichi Ilonzo Momah, PharmD RPh.

Chichi is an ATRIUM24 member and the managing partner and pharmacy manager of Springfield Pharmacy in Springfield, Pennsylvania. In the spirit of helping patients to the fullest extent, she has expanded her program far beyond simply doling out diet plans.

All weight loss patients at Springfield Pharmacy have an initial consultation with Chichi, where they talk about goals and nutrition. From there, Chichi introduces the patient to Ideal Protein, a snack and meal plan provider that produces ketogenic-friendly options that customers select in accordance with their existing condition and weight loss goals. Other pharmacies have also had success with programs like Optavia and Take Charge, to name a few.

Chichi then holds regular coaching sessions with the patient to take measurements, discuss progress and alleviate any ongoing concerns. Fortunately for existing patients, those sessions have continued during COVID-19 with the help of video chats, a perk that has served as a good reinforcement of the program’s foundation of one-to-one coaching. In addition, Chichi has hosted online weight loss webinars for those who want to learn more about the program without leaving the comforts of their home.

One of the most unique aspects of Chichi’s program is that she’s gone through it herself — and had fabulous results — so she understands the nuances of the Ideal Protein platform and how best to position it to patients. While the true benefit of Chichi’s program is that it helps patients, we should also mention that it’s a cash offering, which boosts the pharmacy’s bottom line.

Sound like something you might be interested in adding in your pharmacy? It should — and ATRIUM24 can help you do it. Reach out via our Contact Us page to learn how a weight loss program like Chichi’s will provide value to your store.