Reflecting on Health Reform—Exchanges, Exchanges Everywhere: Understanding the Role of Private Exchanges

Source: David Blumenthal, Commonwealth Fund Blog, January 27, 2014

Just when we thought we’d gotten the health insurance exchange part of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) down, along comes a curve ball: private exchanges.

We knew about public exchanges (or marketplaces): 14 run by states and the District of Columbia, 36 run by the federal government alone or in partnership with states. We knew they aim to provide opportunities for uninsured and individually insured Americans to get coverage under Medicaid or through private insurance policies….

…So what are these other exchanges? How, if at all, do they relate to the ACA? What should we make of them?

Here are some basics….