Patients burst into tears at this city’s glistening new charity hospital when they learned they could get Medicaid health insurance.With the election of a new Democratic governor last November, the state this year finally moved forward with Medicaid expansion, which expands access to health insurance to low-income adults via funding from Obamacare. Enrollment began in June and more than 267,000 Louisianans have signed up. Coverage began on July 1.
In Baton Rouge, state officials had to bring in extra workers to process the flood of applications for coverage.
And at the call center for one of Louisiana’s private Medicaid plans, operators recorded their busiest day on record. ...
“People have needed coverage here for a long, long time,” said David Hood, who served as state health secretary under a Republican governor from 1998 to 2004. “This is long overdue.”