US federal worker unable to pay for insulin due to partial government shutdown

Jack Woodfield
Tue, 15 Jan 2019
US federal worker unable to pay for insulin due to partial government shutdown
A US worker at the Department of Interior says she cannot afford to pay for her insulin because of the partial government shutdown gripping the country.

US Government worker Mallory Lorge, who has type 1 diabetes, said she has not been paid one month's salary because of the shutdown.

The partial shutdown is now in its 24th day, which has left 800,000 public sector workers without pay during this time.

Parts of the government have closed in response to the dispute with Congress over funding for President Donald Trump's wall along the southern border.

Speaking to NBC, the 31-year-old said: "It's like being held hostage. I've been a federal employee for six years, and I love it. I don't get paid much, but I love working for the American people. That the government has put us in this position is like a punch in the gut."

Ms Lorge said she cannot afford to go to hospital if her blood glucose levels rise too high, and she is having to ration her insulin.

"When it gets that high you can go into diabetic ketoacidosis, you can go into a coma. I can't afford to go to the [emergency room]. I can't afford anything. I just went to bed and hoped I'd wake up," she said.

Mallory has just two vials of insulin left in her fridge and is trying to get by on as little as possible.

In the US, insulin needs to be bought, either out of pocket or through health insurance. The price of insulin has been rising to an extent to which some people cannot afford it, a long-running issue in the US for a number of years.

There remains no word on how much longer the government shut down is set to continue.
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