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Cafe Owners

SHOP Coverage

Health insurance for your business and employees

Small Business Health Options Program

Offering health benefits is a major decision for businesses. Health insurance plans offered through the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) are quality, affordable health and dental insurance coverage for small businesses and their employees. SHOP plans are offered by private insurance companies, cover essential health benefits, and may not exclude coverage for treatments for pre-existing conditions.

Making a SHOP health insurance decision

You can generally enroll in SHOP coverage year-round. To find the best plan for your business and employees, think about price, benefits, and features. You may also want to consider:


  • Whether to offer your employees one plan or a choice of plans

  • Whether to offer medical coverage, dental coverage, or both

  • How much of your employees' premiums you’ll pay

  • Whether to offer coverage to dependents and part-time employees

  • When coverage starts

  • How long new employees must wait before they get a coverage offer

Understanding SHOP insurance categories

When you compare SHOP insurance, you'll see 4 categories of plans. The categories have nothing to do with the quality of care. They're based on the way the cost of care will be shared between your employees and the insurance company.


SHOP health coverage: Estimated averages for a typical population. Your employees' costs will vary.

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Choosing a stand-alone dental plan

You can add dental coverage to your SHOP insurance offer or offer dental insurance by itself without a SHOP health plan. Some SHOP health insurance plans also include dental benefits.


As with health plans, you can choose how much of an employee’s dental premium you pay.

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