These condensed Glossary definitions are from the NAIC and for a comprehensive list you can go to NAIC Glossary.
Please note these definitions are for informational purposes and may differ in laws and rules under various policies.
Contracting Hospital - A hospital that has contracted with a particular health care plan to provide hospital services to members of that plan.
Coordination of Benefits (COB) - provision to eliminate over insurance and establish a prompt and orderly claims payment system when a person is covered by more than one group insurance and/or group service plan.
Copay - a cost sharing mechanism in group insurance plans where the insured pays a specified dollar amount of incurred medical expenses and the insurer pays the remainder.
Covered Service - A service that is covered according to the terms in your health care benefits plan.
Deductible - Portion of the insured loss (in dollars) paid by the policy holder
Drug Formulary - A list of preferred drugs chosen by a panel of doctors and pharmacists. Both brand and generic medications are included on the formulary.
Effective Date - date at which an insurance policy goes into force.
Federal Poverty Level (FPL) - A level of income issued annually by the Department of Health and Human Services – used to determine eligibility for certain programs and benefits. FPL will be used to determine the amount of tax credit you qualify for to offset the cost of purchasing health insurance.
Generic Drug - A prescription drug that is the generic equivalent of a brand name drug listed on your health plan's formulary and costs less than the brand name drug.
Generic Substitute - A prescription drug which is the generic equivalent of a drug listed on your health plan's formulary.
Health Insurance Marketplace - The Health Insurance Marketplace, or Health Insurance Exchange, is a federal government website where you can shop, compare and buy plans offered by participating health insurance companies in your area.
HIPAA - A federal law that outlines the rules and requirements employer-sponsored group insurance plans, insurance companies and managed care organizations must follow to provide health care insurance coverage for individuals and groups.
In-Network - Services provided by a physician or other health care provider with a contractual agreement with the insurance company and paid at a higher benefit level.
Inpatient Services - Services provided when a member is registered as a bed patient and is treated as such in a health care facility such as a hospital.
Insured - party(ies) covered by an insurance policy.
Insurer - an insurer or reinsurer authorized to write property and/or casualty insurance under the laws of any state.
Lifetime Limit - A cap on the total lifetime benefits you may get from your insurance company for certain conditions. A health plan may have a total lifetime dollar limit on benefits (like a $1 million lifetime cap) or limits on specific benefits (like a $200,000 lifetime cap on organ transplants or one gastric bypass per lifetime), or a combination of the two. After a lifetime limit is reached, the insurance plan will no longer pay for covered services. Under the ACA, lifetime limits are no longer allowed on essential health benefits, such as emergency services and hospital stays
Medicaid - policies issued in association with the Federal/State entitlement program created by Title XIX of the Social Security Act of 1965 that pays for medical assistance for certain individuals and families with low incomes and resources.
Medicare - a state assistance program, passed under Title XVIII of the Social Security Amendments of 1965, to provide hospital and medical expense insurance to those over 65 years of age.
Medicare Advantage Plan - an HMO, PPO, or Private Fee-For Service Plan that contracts with Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug Plan also includes drug benefits. The plan may provide extra coverage such as vision, hearing, dental, and/or health and wellness programs. Medicare pays a fixed amount for insured's care every month to the companies offering Medicare Advantage plans.
Medicare Part D - Stand-Alone - stand-alone Part D coverage written through individual contracts; stand-alone Part D coverage written through group contracts and certificates; and Part D coverage written on employer groups where the reporting entity is responsible for reporting claims to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).
Medicare Supplement - Insurance coverage sold on an individual or group basis to help fill the "gaps" in the protections granted by the federal Medicare program. This is strictly supplemental coverage and cannot duplicate any benefits provided by Medicare. It is structured to pay part or all of Medicare's deductibles and co-payments. It may also cover some services and expenses not covered by Medicare. Also known as Medigap" insurance.
Network - The group of doctors, hospitals and other health care professionals that a managed care plan has contracted with to deliver medical services to its members.
Non-Contracting Hospital - A hospital that has not contracted with a particular health care plan to provide hospital services to members in that plan.
Out-Of-Network - Services you receive are considered out of network when you use a doctor or other provider that does not have a contract with your health plan. When you go to an out-of-network provider, benefits may not be covered, or may be covered at a lower level. You may be responsible for all or part of the bill when you use out-of-network providers.
Out-Of-Pocket Maximum - The most you have to pay for covered services in a plan year. After you spend this amount on deductibles, copays and coinsurance, your health plan pays 100 percent of the costs of covered benefits. The out-of-pocket maximum doesn't include your monthly premium payments or anything you spend for services your plan doesn't cover.
Outpatient Services - Treatment that is provided to a patient who is able to return home after care without an overnight stay in a hospital or other inpatient facility.
Preauthorization - The process by which members or their primary care physicians (PCP) notify the health plan in advance of treatment plans, such as a hospital admission or a complex diagnostic test. Also called pre-notification.
Pre-Existing Condition - A condition, disability or illness that you have been treated for before applying for new health coverage.
Preventive Care Services - Routine health care that includes screenings, check-ups, and patient counseling to prevent illnesses, disease, or other health problems.
Utilization Management - The way we review the type and amount of care you're getting. This involves looking at the setting for your care and its medical necessity. Examples may use prior authorization, case management, accompanying reviews or proper discharge planning.
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