Health Insurance Exchanges

Curated by Harold M. Bishop, J.D.
Senior Writer and Analyst

Health insurance exchanges (also commonly referred to as a health insurance marketplace or health benefit exchanges), were established by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), as a means by which individuals can purchase qualified health plan coverage from the state. Effective January 1, 2014, exchanges provide qualified individuals with a competitive marketplace where they can compare private health insurance options on the basis of price, quality, and other factors. States choose to adopt a state-based exchange, a federally-facilitated exchange, or some hybrid of those two models.