The health insurance exchange plans were established by the Affordable Care Act and first became available in 2013. Patients who do not have coverage through employment, Medicare or Medicaid can enroll in an exchange plan. During the open enrollment period every year, different types of exchange plans are available for purchase. This can be done online, by phone, by mail or in person.
The amount of coverage an exchange plan provides depends on the type of plan purchased. Some exchange plans can have narrow networks, limiting the amount of nephrologists, hospitals and dialysis clinics available to an ESRD patient. Research is recommended to determine the suitable type of plan for a patient.
Some states operate their own exchange, while others use the federal marketplace. To find out what type of exchange is offered by your state, visit our state resources page.