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Health insurance marketplaces, also called Health Exchanges, are organizations set up to facilitate the purchase of health insurance in every state of the United States in accordance with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). Marketplaces provide a set of government-regulated and standardized health care plans from which individuals may purchase health insurance eligible for federal subsidies.
Healthcare.gov is a healthcare exchange website created by and operated under the United States federal government as per the provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA, often referred to as ‘Obamacare’), designed to serve the residents of the 36 U.S. states that opted not to create their own state-specific exchanges.
While all insurance plans are offered by private companies, the Marketplace is run by either your state or the federal government.
Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act health insurance exchanges by state
Creating state-operated exchanges
Establishing state-federal partnership exchanges
Defaulting to federal exchange
CancerCenter.com made a great infograph on
“What are health insurance marketplaces?”