Glossary Term


An exchange is an online marketplace where people obtain Affordable Care Act (ACA) health insurance plans. Exchanges allow for the review of locally available ACA health plans, determination of tax credits, and enrollment. Exchanges may be administered by the federal government or state governments. The federal exchange is named State exchanges are known as SBMs (state-based marketplaces) or state-based exchanges. 

The four main categories of ACA health plans sold on an exchange are bronze plans, silver plans, gold plans, and platinum plans. There is also a catastrophic coverage plan that is restricted primarily to people under the age of 30.

Are all ACA plans available through government exchanges?

No, some ACA plans are only sold off-exchange through an insurance company website or other delivery channel like an insurance agency or brokerage. Off-exchange ACA plans are restricted from the use of premium subsidies. 

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