Last month, Governor Sandoval became the first Republican leader to agree on expanding Medicaid across Nevada. Sandovals support of Medicaid expansion ensures that 78,000 additional low-income Nevadans will receive health insurance coverage and access to care under the Affordable Care Act. An estimated 21% of Nevadans live in poverty, and 22% have no health insurance.

Sandovals Support of Medicaid Expansion expansion is a major win for Nevada’s poor who otherwise wouldn’t be able to afford coverage on the new health insurance exchange. Nevada’s current Medicaid program does not cover low-income adults unless they are parents or have a documented disability. The program also covers children, pregnant women, and seniors.

Governor Sandoval, like many other Republican governors, initially opposed Medicaid expansion, but told the Associated Press:

“Though I have never liked the Affordable Care Act because of the individual mandate it places on citizens, the increased burden on businesses and concerns about access to health care, the law has been upheld by the Supreme Court. As such, I am forced to accept it as today’s reality and I have decided to expand Nevada’s Medicaid coverage.”

To see where other states stand on Medicaid expansion, check out The Advisory Board Company’s interactive map, and visit healthcare.gov to learn more about the benefits and upcoming changes associated with Health Care Reform.