The SHOP exchanges, designed to be an easy way for small businesses to get insurance for their employees, are being delayed again in 18 states. These states are:
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Delaware, Illinois, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Montana, New Hampshire, new jersey, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota and West Virginia.
The Shop Exchanges are supposed to allow employers to set a fixed amount they pay for insurance for each class of employees, and then the employees can choose from all available companies and plans. That will not happen for yet another year.
“On May 27, 2014, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued a final rule in an effort to move toward implementing employee choice in the Small Business Health Insurance Options Program, also known as the SHOP Exchange. This feature allows small employers purchasing group health insurance through the SHOP Exchange to choose a particular “metal level” of plans offered through the SHOP Exchange. Employers will set a predetermined contribution amount toward the cost of these plans. Employees may then choose from any plan within the metal level chosen by the employer. This level of flexibility was not made available during the first year of operation of the SHOP Exchange in most states.”