Nevada Medicaid Enrollments Soar

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CARSON CITY, Nev. (AP) - Nevada Medicaid enrollments under federal health care reform have surpassed initial projections and are on pace to reach 500,000 by summer.

State Health and Human Services Director Mike Willden says his agency has a 60,000 backlog of pending applications and he may need to speed up hiring to keep up with the demand.

Under President Obama's health care law, states were given the option to expand Medicaid eligibility to include people up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level.

Since Jan. 1, Nevada for the first time allows adults without children who meet the income threshold to be covered under Medicaid.

Willden says the number of newly eligible participants have so far outpaced projections by 8,500.