Nevadans Calling Obamacare Hotline In Tears, Desperate For Coverage

Here’s a name you’ve likely not heard tied to Obamacare yet – Kevin Walsh. Mr. Walsh is part of the team at Xerox that is helping manage the state exchange websites, as well as manning the call center for those who have questions about the their coverage under the Affordable Care Act. When the exchange went live on October 1st (despite the GOP shutdown of the federal government), Mr. Walsh says it was an opening of the emotional floodgates.

People desperate for health insurance in the state of Nevada started calling the center, sometimes in tears, wanting to know if they can finally go see their doctors. Walsh told Bloomberg Businessweek:

They were calling up saying, ‘Can I get my coverage today so I can see my doctor this afternoon?’

Walsh voiced his frustration at the fact that the coverage won’t start until January 1st.

And it seems that the people manning the phones are feeling the significance that their job is having on the lives of those who have lived without insurance. One employee was sent home for some rest against his wishes, but he had been working so hard for so many hours that he was just too tired to keep going.

It’s likely that in the coming weeks and months we will hear this story echoed time and again- people desperate for the kind of coverage that will allow them to see their doctors again, some perhaps for the first time in years. The state of Nevada has one of the highest rate of uninsured– in fact, it is number two in the nation. With more than one-fifth of the state’s population uninsured, and more than one in ten without employment, the situation for Nevadans has long ago crossed the line into dire. With these kinds of numbers, it’s no wonder that people’s “raw emotion” would come out in the attempt to finally gain access to a doctor once again.

This is what the Tea Party Republicans want to shut down. This is what they want to defund. They want to delay the basic right of human beings to simple health care. They want to deny Nevadans and millions of other Americans the right to see a doctor, simply because these Tea Partiers think they can.

But Obamacare is evil, they say. No. What is evil – what is wrong – is to deny people their basic human rights. Alas, it’s what the GOP does best.