The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services is launching four initiatives to collect information that will support implementation of payer and employer provisions in the Affordable Care Act to ease the purchase of coverage via insurance exchanges.

The initiatives, in a CMS notice available here and being published July 6 in the Federal Register, are:

* Initial Plan Data Collection to Support Qualified Health Plan Certification and Other Financial Management and Exchange Operations: This is data that insurers must collect to have their health plans certified as “qualified health plans” that can be posted on health insurance exchanges.

* Data Collection to Support Eligibility Determinations and Enrollment for Small Businesses in the Small Business Health Options Program: This is a single, streamlined form that employers will use to apply, via online, paper and telephone processes, for coverage of employees under programs targeting small businesses.

* Data Collection to Support Eligibility Determinations and Enrollment for Employees in the Small Business Health Options Program: This is a single, streamlined form that employees will use to apply, via online, paper, and telephone processes, for coverage. The Congressional Budget Office estimates 8 million individuals will enroll in health plans targeting small businesses from 2014 through 2016.

* Data Collection to Support Eligibility Determinations for Insurance Affordability Programs and Enrollment through Affordable Insurance Exchanges, Medicaid and Children’ Health Insurance Program Agencies: This is a single, streamlined form that each state will use for individuals to apply for coverage through an exchange and other insurance affordability programs.

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