New exchange plan regulations suggest that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services could announce more deadline extensions if it or carriers have serious problems with enrolling exchange plan applicants.

U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius has said that will be requiring the issuers of the commercial plans sold through the exchanges — "qualified health plans" — to accept the first payment for coverage starting Jan. 1 up until Dec. 31.

Separately, in new interim final regulations set to appear in the Federal Register Dec. 17, CMS has given the formal regulations it is using to move the plan selection deadline for QHP coverage starting Jan. 1 to Dec. 23, from Dec. 15.

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Allison Bell

Allison Bell, ThinkAdvisor's insurance editor, previously was LifeHealthPro's health insurance editor. 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 at [email protected] or on Twitter at @Think_Allison.