Health Insurance Marketplaces

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Colorado-Specific Marketplace Information Information
General Marketplace Information

The 2021 Marketplace Open Enrollment Period (OE8) began on November 1, 2020. For Federally-Facilitated Marketplaces (FFMs) OE8 will run from November 1 to December 15, 2020. State-Based Marketplaces (SBMs) are able to determine the length of their Open Enrollment Periods. In Region VIII, Colorado is the only SBM; their OE8 will run from November 1, 2020, through January 15, 2021, but for coverage that starts January 1, applications must be completed by December 15, 2020. Consumers who experience certain qualifying life events may be able to obtain Marketplace coverage outside of open enrollment through a Special Enrollment Period (SEP). People can apply for Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) at any time of year.

In Region VIII (Colorado, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming), only Colorado is currently running its own State-Based Marketplace, called Connect for Health Colorado; the other states in the region are using the Federally-Facilitated Marketplace (FFM), which can be accessed at There are also a few states in the country using a State Partnership Marketplace. The marketplaces are websites where people can shop for health insurance and choose the policy that best fits their needs. The marketplaces list only insurance policies that comply with the rules outlined in the ACA (they must cover pre-existing conditions, must spend 80% of premiums on actual health care rather than overhead, cannot have lifetime limits on coverage, and must provide free preventative care). People earning up to 400% of the federal poverty level (FPL) may qualify for a tax credit and cost-sharing reductions if they choose one of the silver plans (plans are offered in bronze, silver, gold, and platinum, based on the deductible and co-pay amounts).


Connect for Health Colorado
List of assistance sites in Colorado
Assistance Site Network Directory

Website for Colorado’s health insurance marketplace
Connect for Health Colorado

The Commonwealth Fund
Article on how state insurance marketplaces are shaping health plan designs (December 2013)
Realizing Health Reform’s Potential

Article on what states are doing to simplify health plan choice in the insurance marketplaces (December 2013)
Realizing Health Reform’s Potential

Document that describes that while problems are to be expected with the rollout of such enormous technology systems, outreach and enrollment staff and clients should not be discouraged and deterred from using the marketplaces (October 2013)
Marketplace IT Glitches: The Sky Is Not Falling

Department of Health Care Policy and Financing
Webpage with resources for partners, consumers, brokers, and agents
For Our Stakeholders

Information on the Colorado Indigent Care Program (CICP)
Changes to Health Care Coverage in Colorado

The Kaiser Family Foundation
Report detailing most common characteristics of assister programs across the country (July 2014)
Survey of Health Insurance Marketplace Assister Programs

Website that shows the number of people who have applied and enrolled for health insurance through the marketplaces in each state
State Marketplace Statistics

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Document that reviews health insurance plans in all states and analyzes premiums, deductibles, copayments, and coinsurance (November 2013)
Looking Beyond Technical Glitches: A Preliminary Analysis of Premiums and Cost Sharing in the New Health Insurance Marketplaces


Website for the Federally Facilitated Marketplace (FFM) for residents of states that do not have their own marketplace

FFM toll-free call center for clients: 1-800-318-2596

TTY (Teletype): 1-855-889-4325

Special Assister Line: 1-855-868-4678. Must have a Navigator/CAC ID to access this line: use your 8 digit ID number and then add 55

  • Call center personnel can assist in English and Spanish. They also have access to translators for 150 other languages.
  • Call center personnel can walk clients though the eligibility process for Medicaid and then can help clients compare health insurance plans.
  • Call center personnel can refer clients to enrollment partners in the states if they prefer to enroll in-person.
  • Call center personnel cannot accept any payment information over the phone. Clients need to contact the individual insurance companies to process payments.
  • Call center personnel cannot create accounts for clients, though they can help with resetting passwords

Links to the applications for health coverage, eligibility appeals, and exemptions for FFM states
Application for Individuals and Families
Application for SHOP Employers
Eligibility Appeals Forms
Exemption Applications

Website to order marketplace paper applications for your organization- click ‘Create an Account’
Product Ordering Website

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)
Fact sheet on key standards for health insurers and the health insurance marketplace for 2015 (March 2014)
Fact Sheet: HHS 2015 Health Policy Standards Fact Sheet

Document that is intended to serve as a quick reference for states using the Federally Facilitated Marketplace (FFM), includes consumer assistance and outreach and education resources (September 2013)
Health Insurance Marketplace Educational Resources for States, Consumers, and Other Stakeholders

Various videos and images of the health insurance marketplace
Images & Multimedia

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
Marketplace applications in 15 different languages
Marketplace Consumer Application


Center for Health Care Strategies, Inc.
Information on how to minimize churn between the marketplace and Medicaid (January 2014)
Minimizing Care Gaps for Individuals Churning between the Marketplace and Medicaid: Key State Considerations

Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)
Information on the Market Standards Rule for 2015 and beyond for federally-facilitated and state-partnership Marketplaces (June 2014)
Exchange and Insurance Market Standards for 2015 and Beyond

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities
FAQ explaining the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) rule allowing insurers to opt to collect past-due premiums from the last 12 months before allowing someone to enroll in a plan with the same carrier for the 2018 coverage year (November 2017)
Key Facts on Past-Due Premiums in the Marketplace

Resources explaining the auto-renewal process for the 2018 coverage year (November 2017)
Explainer Video Auto-Renewal Process for 2018 Presentation

The Commonwealth Fund
Survey on the perceptions of the marketplaces and whether or not the respondents had enrolled or planned to enroll (December 2013)
Americans’ Experiences in the Health Insurance Marketplaces: Results from the First Three Months

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
Report on premium costs and variations in the health insurance marketplaces for 2014 (June 2014)
Premium Affordability, Competition, and Choice in the Health Insurance Marketplace, 2014
Summary of which benefits each plan sold in marketplaces must include
What Marketplace Health Insurance Plans Cover

Journal of Health Economics
Study on plan incentives in the marketplaces (May 2014)
Assessing Incentives for Service-Level Selection in Private Insurance Exchanges

Kaiser Health News
Article on how people are expected to shift between the exchanges and Medicaid as their income fluctuates (January 2014)
Millions of Lower-Income People Expected to Shift Between Exchanges and Medicaid

Kaiser Family Foundation
Report on changes in health insurer participation from 2014-2020 in all counties in the U.S with charts, tables, and interactive maps (November 2019)
Insurer Participation on ACA Marketplaces, 2014-2020

Interactive map with the status of the state marketplace decision and whether or not the state is expanding Medicaid
Status of State Medicaid Expansion Decisions

National Academy for State Health Policy
Brief on how states are sharing consumer assistance with the federal marketplace (January 2014)
Shared Responsibility in Consumer Assistance

Advice from Marketplace leaders on developing a State-Based Marketplace (May 2019)
So You Want to Build a State-Based Marketplace? Here’s How!

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Document that reviews health insurance plans in all states and analyzes premiums, deductibles, copayments, and coinsurance (November 2013)
Looking Beyond Technical Glitches: A Preliminary Analysis of Premiums and Cost Sharing in the New Health Insurance Marketplaces

Urban Institute Health Policy Center
Results from a health reform monitoring survey on use of the health insurance marketplaces (March 2014)
Who Has Been Looking for Information in the ACA Marketplaces? Why? And How?