The Obama administration has issued new regs that public exchanges – and participating carriers – can use to cope with startup problems. Most importantly, it pushes the selection and payment deadline for Jan.1 plan coverage to Dec. 23.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has given the batch of "interim final regulations" the title "Maximizing January 1, 2014, Coverage Opportunities" and is preparing to publish the regs in the Federal Register next week.

The Dec. 23 deadline applies to all sorts of exchange plans, including Small Business Health Options Program QHPs, multi-state plans and standalone dental pans, officials said. The original deadline was Dec. 15.

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Allison Bell

Allison Bell, a senior reporter at ThinkAdvisor and BenefitsPRO, previously was an associate editor at National Underwriter Life & Health. She has a bachelor's degree in economics from Washington University in St. Louis and a master's degree in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. She can be reached through X at @Think_Allison.