What Are Health Insurance Marketplaces and Exchanges?
Exchanges or marketplaces are services that enable enrollment in insurance either through a public or private forum. These forums are accessible through multiple portals and websites.
Arkansas Private Exchanges vs Public Exchanges
The private exchange is designed to be used by employers to allow employees the ability to enroll in whichever pre-selected plan the employers chose. The private exchange also is where individuals and small businesses shop and enroll for coverage during the open enrollment window. Consulting firms or brokers typically run the private exchange utilized by an employer. When utilizing the private exchange, you forfeit the right to qualify for subsidies or financial assistance.
The following carriers are available outside of the Arkansas public exchange:
- QualChoice Health Insurance
- Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield
- QC Life and Health
- Ambetter of Arkansas
- UnitedHealthcare Life Insurance Company
- Coventry Health and Life
The public exchange for Arkansas is on course to be a federally-supported state-based exchange where the state has its own choices but is accessed through the framework put in place by the federal government. Since November 2015, Arkansas has utilized this model for small businesses. When using the public exchange, your application will also verify if you qualify for Medicaid, CHIP, or other discounts based on income level.
The following carriers are available on the Arkansas public exchange:
- Arkansas Blue Cross Blue Shield (USAble Mutual)
- Celtic Insurance Company (Ambetter)
- QCA Health Plan
Arkansas Marketplace and Exchange Facts