Saving Businesses & Consumers Money
The Colorado Option is available to all Coloradans who buy their health insurance on the individual market (i.e. not from an employer) and small employers with less than 100 employees.
Colorado Option plans are affordable for both small businesses and consumers and provide rich benefits at a lower cost than many other plan options.
Getting Started with a CO Option Small Group Plan
For business owners: Colorado Option small group plans can be purchased through a broker. See below for more information.
For employees: Talk to your employer about the Colorado Option small group plan they purchased to find out more about your enrollment period and for additional plan information.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Colorado Option?
The Colorado Option is a program where the health insurance companies all offer the same health insurance plan — or, in other words, the benefits in the plan are the same from all companies. This makes it much easier to compare the plans from the different companies.
If they’re all the same, do I need to compare them?
Yes, because each company will have different:
- Premiums - Each company will charge a different amount.
- Doctors, hospitals, etc. - Each insurance company has its own network of doctors and other health care providers.
- Customer Service - Each company does customer service differently, and people have preferences for some methods over others.
What are some of the key benefits of the Colorado Option?
- Free primary care - $0 cost to you when you go see your main doctor to discuss new or existing health issues, concerns, worries or symptoms. You will see these types of office visits referred to as “Primary care visits to treat an injury or illness.”
- Free mental health office visits - $0 cost to you when you go see your mental health provider in an office setting.
- Free prenatal and post-pregnancy visits - $0 cost to you when you go to your doctor’s office for care during your pregnancy. These office visits do not include your delivery.
- Certain free diabetic supplies - $0 cost to you when you buy supplies to help you control your diabetes such as continuous glucose monitors. Other diabetic supplies, such as insulin, insulin syringes, insulin pens, insulin pump, blood glucose monitors, blood lancets, and diabetic test strips, may be offered by your plan at $0 cost — check your plan documents for more details.
- Predictable costs - Colorado Option plans use co-pays more than coinsurance, such as $50 for a Specialist visit or $50 for an urgent care visit. With co-pays, you know what you’ll pay for a service.
Who is eligible for a Colorado Option small group plan?
If you are a small business with a number of employees between 2-100, you can purchase a small group Colorado Option plan with coverage effective as early as January 1, 2024.
I am a small business owner — how can I select a Colorado Option small group plan for myself and my employees?
Health insurance companies selling small group coverage must offer a Colorado Option plan to small employers.
Consumers can find expert help enrolling through a broker connected to Connect for Health Colorado. For more information, go to Connect for Health Colorado’s “Options for Small Business Owners and Employees” webpage and click on “Contact a local expert.”
I am a small business employee — how can I enroll in my employer’s Colorado Option plan?
If your employer has selected a small business plan, you’ll need to reach out to them directly for plan and enrollment information.
I am a broker — what should I know about the Colorado Option, and what should I tell my clients about Colorado Option small group plans?
To find out more about the Colorado Option, please visit the Division’s Colorado Option overview page and read the 2024 Colorado Option Standardized Plan Document. It could be helpful to mention easy comparison between standardized plans, the $0 benefits included in Colorado Option plans, and information about the Option’s culturally responsive provider network standards.
In addition, brokers should know that Colorado law states that the commissions paid to insurance producers for the sale of the Standardized Plan must be comparable to the average commissions paid for the sale of the other plans offered in the individual and small group markets (Section 10-16-1305(4), Colorado Revised Statute). The Division of Insurance reviews commissions as part of its annual rate review process.
I am a broker– Who should I reach out to if I have any questions about Colorado Option plans?