Question: Since the federal government announced that the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) will be delayed until 2015. Small-business employees will still be able to get insurance, but the states have the option to limit that to one choice, rather than a variety of plans, for the first year. How does this affect Covered California?
Answer: Federally facilitated SHOP exchanges will lack employee choice and aggregate billing until 2015. Covered California’s SHOP exchange will be fully functional as designed with both of those features in 2014. What that means to California workers is that they can choose a plan from any carrier in the SHOP. Employers will choose the metal level of the plans offered to their employees and get an one aggregate (combines different carriers) monthly bill from the SHOP.