Health insurance

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Health Insurance

An insurance policy that provides coverage when the policyholder (or his/her dependent) becomes ill. For example, a health insurance policy may pay for most or all of the costs of a surgery. Health insurance may cover doctor's visits, medical procedures, prescription drugs, and so forth. The policyholder pays a premium each month in exchange for the coverage; additionally, the policyholder often must pay coinsurance and/or a copay for certain procedures. In the United States, many people procure health insurance through their employers because it is often expensive to buy on one's own. Likewise, many people have group insurance to provide medical coverage. A significant amount of debate exists as to the appropriate role of the U.S. government in regulating health insurance providers and whether the government should assume this role directly.

Health insurance.

Health insurance covers some of or all the cost of treating an insured person's illnesses or injuries. In some cases, it pays for preventive care, such as annual physicals and diagnostic tests.

You may have health insurance as an employee benefit from your job or, if you qualify, through the federal government's Medicare or Medicaid programs.

You may also buy individual health insurance directly from an insurance company or be eligible through a plan offered by a group to which you belong. As you do with other insurance contracts, you pay premiums to purchase coverage and the insurer pays some of or all your healthcare costs, based on the terms of your contract.

Some health insurance requires that you meet an annual deductible before the insurer begins to pay. There may also be coinsurance, which is your share, on a percentage basis, of each bill, or a copayment, which is a fixed dollar amount, for each visit.

Health insurance varies significantly from plan to plan and contract to contract. Generally, most plans cover hospitalization, doctors' visits, and other skilled care. Some plans also cover some combination of prescription drugs, rehabilitation, dental care, and innovative therapies or complementary forms of treatment for serious illnesses.

References in periodicals archive ?
Figure 114: Russian Personal Accident and Health Insurance C Number of Brokers, 2009C 2013
Nowadays most insured Americans (61 percent) get their health insurance through their employers.
Despite his medical condition, "I would be eligible for my partner's health insurance coverage" if same-sex couples were allowed to marry, Clarenbach says, adding that he is now getting insurance through a state aid plan.
COMPREHENSION: Why can't more of the uninsured utilize public health insurance programs?
This could be done by expanding employer-based coverage, eliminating Medicare's two-year waiting period for coverage of the disabled, letting adults over 55 "buy in" to Medicare, and building on Medicaid and the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) to cover low-income parents, young adults and single adults.
member countries, these changes most certainly will include a strengthening of the regulations in support of private health insurance.
Fair Care would correct the discrimination built into the tax code that currently gives unlimited tax benefits to those who get health insurance through their employer, but no tax benefit to the individual purchaser.
To bolster the tax-free benefits of non-key employees, and thus the benefits key employees can elect, a company may have a cafeteria plan but provide health insurance coverage to key employees "outside" the plan.
What the disparity does reflect is a tendency among American reporters to state or imply that Canada's increasingly intense debate about its universal health insurance program is evidence that its program is in "crisis" and that universal, government-financed health insurance programs are bound to fail.
Jim McDermott, D-WA; and health-care policy organizations try to accomplish at the state level what President Clinton failed to do at the national level: enact mandates that force employers to provide their employees with health insurance (and kick in a 50 percent co-payment), create standard benefits packages, and impose cost-containment standards on all businesses.
CHICAGO -- Health-care recommendations outlined in President Bush's State-of-the-Union address and expanded upon in documents issued by the White House represent a giant step towards addressing the nation's health-care cost crisis, but lingering questions remain as to what actually is required to make private health insurance more affordable and increase the number of Americans with health insurance.

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