Alfie FAQs

Answers to our most common questions

How does it work?

Frequently Asked Questions

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Program
What is Alfie?

Alfie is the first program to combine doctor-prescribed medication, lifestyle changes led through 1:1 health coach visits, and SMS access to your care team to help you lose weight, and keep it off.

Our doctors will work with you to determine which FDA approved medication is right for you, if any, and prescribe the best medication for you. You'll be assigned a personal health coach to guide you on your weight loss journey and make changes to your lifestyle, including exercise, diet, and other wellbeing. Lastly, we use proven behavioral psychology to group you with peers for weekly challenges that motivate you to stay on track. 

To demonstrate how confident we are in our program, we offer a 10% weight loss guarantee.

Who is Alfie for?

Alfie is designed for individuals over the age of 18 who have tried to lose weight before with limited success.

We currently offer services in Washington DC, Maryland, Virginia, New Jersey, and New York City. If you're not in one of these locations, send us an email at info@joinalfie.com and we'll work on adding your location to our list!

To find out if you’re eligible, sign up today.

What is a metabolic review?

Our metabolic review schedules you for a blood test at a local testing center near you and then pairs you with a trained Alfie healthcare professional to review your results. We look for risk factors that medication may not be right for you, as well as other indications to verify you'll be a great fit for our program.

What does my virtual visit look like? 

Your virtual visit will be with a trained Alfie healthcare professional. They'll review the results of your blood work with you, go through questions remaining from your intake, prescribe your medication, and explain the steps of the program with you.

Once you've met with your healthcare professional and picked up your medication, you'll receive a text to schedule your first health coach meeting.

How does Alfie differ from other weight loss programs?

Alfie is the first program to combine doctor-prescribed medication, lifestyle changes led through 1:1 health coach visits, and SMS access to your care team to help you lose weight, and keep it off.

Programs that don't include medication (e.g. Weight Watchers, Noom) ignore the fact that biology is a huge factor in impacting weight gain and loss, and focus only on habit changes. These programs only provide 5% weight loss on average.

Programs that prescribe non-GLP-1 medication also only provide 5% weight loss on average, as GLP-1s are the most effective weight loss medication available.

Other programs that do prescribe GLP-1 medications use clunky apps, have doctors that don't check in on you regularly, and don't include real community aspects other than simple online forums.

Does Alfie replace my primary care provider?

Alfie is not a replacement for your primary care provider or any specialists who are currently managing your care, although we look forward to working with them.

Do I need a referral from my doctor to use Alfie?

No, you do not need a referral from your doctor to use Alfie.

Eligibility
Who is eligible to join Alfie?

Alfie is available to adults between the ages of 18-64 with a BMI of 30 and above (or 27 and above with other metabolic conditions such as diabetes, pre-diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, or obstructive sleep apnea), and who aren’t dealing with substance abuse, eating disorders, cancer, recent bariatric surgery, active gallbladder disease, or history of pancreatitis or history of medullary thyroid cancer (MEN syndrome) and who are covered by a commercial or employer health insurance plan.

Alfie is currently available in DC, MD, VA, NJ, NY, CA, FL, and TX.

Can i join Alfie if I have a pre-existing condition?

Certainly!

Alfie is designed to work for people with a variety of underlying conditions. Throughout the program, we’ll monitor your metabolic health and can work with your primary care to coordinate your treatment plan. The metabolic changes you make with Alfie will likely have a positive effect on other conditions you may have.

I think or know I have an eating disorder. Can I still join?

If you think or know you have an eating disorder, it's best to seek treatment for that disorder prior to joining Alfie. You can reach out to your primary care provider or utilize resources like Project HEAL to get the support you need.

Medication
Are the medications Alfie providers prescribe safe?

When you sign up for Alfie, you complete a detailed patient intake and blood work that are reviewed by your Alfie healthcare professional before prescribing any medication.

Alfie providers prescribe a class of medications known as GLP-1s, which work to inhibit your appetite. GLP-1s are FDA-approved and safe and have been widely used since the early 2000s. These medications are safe to take with other common prescriptions, and your provider will determine the best medication for you.

Side effects of GLP-1 medications are extremely rare and over 95% of individuals who take these medications do not experience side effects. In those that do, nausea is often the most common and typically resolves within the first month of being on the medication.

If you do experience side effects that make you ineligible to participate in the program, you may be eligible for a partial refund.

To learn more about potential side effects, go here.

How do GLP-1 medications work? 

GLP-1 medications work with your body's natural GLP-1 receptors to regulate weight loss, metabolic function, as well as decreasing your risk of other diseases.

GLP-1s lead the pancreas to produce insulin after meals to bring down blood sugar. They also bind to receptors in the brain to suppress appetite. These receptors release chemicals that help diminish the desire to eat, reducing your hunger.

GLP-1s are natural chemicals, but don't last long within the human body. That's why taking GLP-1s can help reduce your weight even though your body already produces its own.

Research has shown that in addition to exercise and diet changes, Alfie's program of GLP-1 medications are the most effective way to lose weight and safely keep it off.

Why do Alfie providers prescribe injectable medications?

Alfie clinicians prescribe these medications because they are the most effective ones available for treating obesity.

Although an injection may seem scary at first, Alfie clinicians will guide you through the process, which you can do from the comfort of your own home and it virtually painless.

Will my insurance cover GLP-1 medications?

Most private insurance plans will cover GLP-1 medications that our doctors will prescribe. We will work directly with your insurance to help get approval for any medications.

Government insurances plans like Medicare, Medicaid, and Tricare at this time do not cover the medications, but that is likely to change in the near future as the US government is reviewing new bills that provide coverage for obesity medications through Medicare, Medicaid, and Tricare.

1:1 Health Coaching
How does my health coach help guide my goal setting?

Once you sign up for Alfie and have received your prescription, you’ll be introduced to your health coach. In your first meeting with your health coach, you’ll walk through your current lifestyle choices and your preferences, as well as your main goals in losing weight.

Rather than giving you a total life makeover, your health coach will work with you to determine manageable weekly goals that you can complete in order to start building lifestyle habit changes. As you continue meeting with your health coaches, your feedback will be the basis for further goals.

What are Alfie's daily check-ins?

Accountability is key to losing weight.

Each day, your care team will reach out to you via text to ask you questions about your exercise, diet, and wellbeing progress. This conversation should take a maximum of 5 minutes - significantly faster than having to log into an app and input your progress.

Once a week (depending on the medication you are prescribed) your care team will reach out and remind you to take your medication so you don't have to worry about setting calendar reminders or forgetting to take your medication.

We 100% understand that certain days may be harder than others; daily check-ins help your care make sure that a bad day doesn't spiral into a bad week. If there's an issue you're having one day, our care team can reach out and find ways to support you as needed.

If I have a question about lifestyle goals, who do I reach out to?

You can reach out to your health coach at any time via text.

However, we do expect you to be courteous. Harassment of health coaches or other care team members may get you removed from the program without a refund.

Pricing
Does Alfie accept insurance?

Alfie works with the vast majority of commercial and employer insurance plans in order to get coverage for your doctor-prescribed medication and labs. Lab copays may vary by plan, but your doctor-prescribed medications that may be provided through Alfie are capped at $25 per month after any deductible is met.

At Alfie, we guarantee the cost of your GLP-1 medication with insurance will be $25/month or less (after any deductible is met) or you’re eligible for a refund (the cost of the program minus the cost of the Metabolic Review).

Unfortunately we do not take insurance for our program at this time. However, we will work with your insurance to cover lab tests (minus the applicable copay) and your medication (minus a $25 copay).

What's not included in the price?

Lab tests and prescription medications are not included in the membership cost, but Alfie will work with your insurance to get them covered. Medication should be capped at $25 or less per month after any deductible is met.

If you are not satisfied with your insurance company's coverage of your prescribed medication, we can end your program and issue you a refund before you fill your first prescription.

What is Alfie's weight loss guarantee?

You can read more about Alfie's weight loss guarantee here.

What is Alfie's refund policy?

You can read more about Alfie's refund policy here.

Providers
Who are the health providers I will see? 

Alfie employs licensed and certified professionals including Nurse Practitioners (NPs) and medical doctors (MDs).

You may be seen by NPs or MDs or both.

Alfie health coaches are certified and education in a wide variety of fields, including weight loss, nutrition, sleep, and well-being.

Privacy
How does Alfie secure my data?

Your data's security is of utmost importance to us. As doctors and biomedical engineers we understand best practices for storing, transferring, and securing data securely and in compliance with regulations like HIPAA when required.

For details on pricing, see our privacy policy and privacy practices.

Why does Alfie verify my identify?

When you sign up for Alfie, we ask you to verify your identity by sharing your photo identification. We do this to make sure you're signing up for yourself and not on someone else's behalf and to comply with medical regulations.