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Health insurance and Obamacare terms

What does health reform mean to you? Start with these definitions.


Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA)

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) – also known as the Affordable Care Act (ACA) or Obamacare –… Read more

Platinum plan

See Obamacare metal plans.

pre-existing condition

A pre-existing condition is a medical condition that is excluded from coverage by an insurance company because the condition was… Read more

preferred provider organization (PPO)

A preferred provider organization (PPO) is a managed care organization of health providers who contract with an insurer or third-party… Read more

premium assistance tax credits

Premium assistance tax credits – usually just called premium subsidies – are included in the health reform legislation to help… Read more

premium subsidies

The Affordable Care Act's premium subsidies were designed to help Americans purchase their own health insurance. The subsidies are in… Read more

primary care provider (PCP)

A health care professional (usually a physician) who is responsible for monitoring an individual's overall health care needs. Typically, a… Read more

private exchange

A private exchange is simply an online resource set up by brokers, insurance carriers or benefit consultants, where individuals and… Read more

private health insurance

Private health insurance – plans marketed by the private health insurance industry – currently dominates the U.S. health care landscape, with… Read more


Provider is a term used for health professionals who provide health care services. Sometimes, the term refers only to physicians.… Read more

public exchange

The ACA included a provision to set up a public exchange in every state, run by either the state, HHS,… Read more

public option

A public option – also referred to as a public plan – was a proposal within the health reform legislation… Read more