Most important for long-term reform, a system of health-care superstores — the wonks call them "exchanges" or "co-ops" — where individuals and small businesses can go to buy a plan, could be included.This statement is dangerously uninformed. The “exchanges” and the “co-ops” are two radically different proposals. They are in no way similar.
An “exchange” could be described as a health-care superstore. It would be a single place where an individual or business could compare the prices and benefits of several plans. An “exchange” is like a highly regulated Orbitz for health insurance.
The “co-ops” being proposed would be non-profit health insurance companies. They would be health insurance companies that are member owned and operated. They would sale health insurance plans just like Aetna, Humana, Cigna, etc. The “co-ops” could be described as the equivalent of a credit unions, but for health insurance instead of banking.
The “exchanges” are where you compare all the insurance plans. The “co-ops” are non-profit insurance companies that would sale insurance plans. An “exchange” is a marketplace, while a “co-op” would be just one of the many companies selling health insurance policies in that marketplace.