Also referred to as an "exchange", this is a platform through which individuals may purchase health insurance plans. As a result of the Affordable Care Act, some state-based marketplaces and a federally facilitated health insurance marketplace was created (healthcare.gov). These public exchanges provide consumers with subsidies and tax credits that help lower their premium payments.
There are also private health insurance exchanges that may be set up by employers and health insurance companies. These exchanges do not provide access to subsidies and tax credits; however, they may offer consumers additional coverage options such as dental insurance.