Blue Access for Employers

Enrollment Delays on Health Insurance Marketplace

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) have announced the following delays on the Health Insurance Marketplace, which affect enrollment in health insurance coverage for 2014. With any new program of this magnitude, unexpected delays are not unusual.

Online Exchange delayed for Small Businesses; Paper Application Still Available

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) have announced that online enrollment for the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP), originally scheduled for October 1, will not be available until November. The SHOP  is a Marketplace for business owners who employ 50 or fewer full-time employees.

The SHOP paper application process is still available starting October 1, 2013. This means small businesses will be able to mail their applications on October 1, but they won't be able to enroll online until November for a January 1, 2014, effective date. Also, small businesses can still buy directly from an insurance company or agent.

An additional delay that affects consumers:

  • Online Enrollment Delayed on Spanish-Language Website — Online enrollment on the Health Insurance Marketplace will not be available on the Spanish-language website. You can still apply over the phone with a Spanish-speaking Call Center representative.


Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas has a longstanding commitment to providing access to affordable health care products and solutions, which remains constant. We are fully prepared to offer an array of competitively priced products both on and off the new SHOP Marketplace. We will continue to give you the information you need to better understand the new health care law.

Contact your Blue Cross and Blue Shield representative for more information.