Yesterday, the Department of Health and Human Services confirmed that the Small Business Health Options Plan — intended to provide small businesses with insurer choice — will be delayed until 2015.
The SHOP called for a new insurance marketplace specifically for small businesses starting next January. Now, in most states, those businesses will instead be limited to a single plan option.
That won't be the case in Washington, though. Michael Marchand, director of communications for Washington Health Benefit Exchange, said the announcement made yesterday should not affect the state's exchange, along with its online marketplace known as the Washington Healthplanfinder.
“That doesn't affect us at all,” he said. “The big impact is for the federally funded exchanges, not state-based like ours.”
He added that Washington is “way ahead of the game.”
Thirty-three states will have federally operated insurance markets.