Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, largest issuers of health coverage participated in most exchanges, and number of plans available varied: r
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Description

PPACA required by January 1, 2014, the establishment in each state of health insurance exchanges- marketplaces where eligible individuals and small businesses can compare and select among insurance plans. Issuer participation, including the number of plans these issuers offer, is a key factor in the extent of consumer choice offered by the exchanges. GAO was asked to examine the number and types of issuers participating in both the individual and small-business exchanges beginning in 2014, as well as how this compared with issuer participation in the individual and small-group markets prior to the exchanges. In this report, GAO describes (1) the extent to which issuers that previously offered health plans in the individual and small-group markets participated in the exchanges in 2014, and (2) the issuers that participated in 2014 exchanges and the health plans they offered. GAO analyzed data obtained from CMS and states on the health plans offered by issuers that participated in states' exchanges in 2014. GAO also analyzed CMS data on issuers' participation and market share in the 2012 individual and small-group markets, the most recently available national market-wide data. GAO reviewed relevant laws and regulations and interviewed CMS officials to identify federal requirements related to exchange participation. GAO obtained

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