Care Glossary

Activities of Daily Living (ADLs)
Everyday functions and activities that an insurance policy may use to determine when or if they’ll pay for certain visits. These activities can include bathing, continence, dressing, eating, toileting, and transferring.

Acute Care
Medical care over a short amount of time; usually to treat an illness or injury that develops rapidly, has pronounced symptoms, and is finite in length.

Alzheimer's Disease
A form of dementia that is progressive and degenerative in nature and causes severe memory loss and intellectual deterioration.

Loss of the ability to use or understand language.

The act of using established medical guidelines to determine the physical and/or mental status of a patient.

Bed Reservation Benefit
A feature of some long-term care insurance policies that covers hospitalization during a covered stay.

Benefit Period
The length of time that a policy can pay the benefit amount.

Caregiver, Primary
The key person or relative in charge of supervising or providing care for a person who is incapacitated.

Caregiver(s), Secondary
Relatives or others who assist in giving care part-time.

Catastrophic Illness
An illness that suddenly and significantly disrupts a person’s normal lifestyle either temporarily or permanently.

Chronic Care
Protracted or frequently recurring care for an illness.

Cognitive Impairment
An inability to properly orient one’s self in relation to people, places, time or reason; a deficiency in a person's short or long term memory.

Compound Benefit Increases
A yearly 5% increase in a patient’s maximum daily benefit, monthly benefit or lifetime payment maximum.

Custodial Care
Assistance by a trained or capable non-medical individual for activities of daily living, such as bathing, eating, dressing, and other routine activities.

Daily Benefit
The daily amount of money an insurance policy covers for long-term care expenses.

A disorder of the brain that causes deterioration of mental faculties.

Elimination Period
A deductible that determines the length of time a patient must pay out-of-pocket for long-term care services before their insurance policy will cover the cost.

Equal Benefit Increases
An annual increase in a patient’s maximum daily benefit, monthly benefit or lifetime payment maximum that equals 5% of the original policy’s cost.

Home Care
A non-medical service that assists patients in personal hygiene and homemaking.

Home Health Care
Medical, occupational, physical, respiratory, speech therapy, or other types of care within the patient’s own home.

Home Modification
Changes made to a home that allow a patient to function within their environment comfortably.

Homemaker Services
Light housekeeping, laundry, shopping, cooking, home management and similar services that lighten the at-home workload of the patient.

Inflation Protection
An optional policy feature that increases benefit levels over time to help pay for expected inflation within the long-term care services industry.

Intermediate Nursing Care
Long-term nursing care for patients who are in stable condition, but require assistance on and off throughout the day.

Long Term Care (LTC)
Daily-living assistance over an extended period of time for disabled or cognitively impaired individuals that is provided at home, in a nursing home, assisted living facility, or an adult day care center.

Means Test
A process that determines a patient’s eligibility for government benefit programs by measuring their income and assets.

A state-administered medical welfare program supported by federal, state and local funds that provides health care for poverty-level individuals.

A federally-run insurance program that benefits those who are chronically ill or disabled and people aged 65 or older. This program’s coverage of nursing home and assisted living benefits are limited.

Medicare Supplement ("Medigap") Insurance
A private insurance policy that pays the co-payments and deductibles Medicare won’t cover. Personal and custodial care are not covered by these policies.

Monthly Benefit
The amount of money a patient’s insurance company is willing to cover for long-term care each month.

Nest Egg
Money put aside by an individual or couple to use for emergencies, retirement, special needs or other special reasons.

Non-forfeiture Benefit
If your policy lapses after X years, you'll be provided with a reduced paid-up lifetime maximum. This reduced amount is the greater of all premiums paid to your policy or X times your maximum daily benefit at the time of lapse. No further premium payments are required to maintain this benefit.

Nursing Home
A state-licensed facility that provides a variety of services, including room and board, 24-hour-per-day skilled nursing care, personal care, and custodial care.

Plan of Care
An individualized plan that specifies the type and frequency of long-term care services as prescribed by a physician.

Pre-existing Condition
An illness or disability that a patient is diagnosed or treated for before applying for a long-term care policy.

Preferred Health Discount
A policy premium discount given to healthy individuals.

Respite Care
A service that offers short or long-term care for disabled or cognitively impaired individuals whose primary caretaker need temporary relief.

Restoration of Benefits
An insurance policy feature that restores your payment maximum if you recover and discontinue use of benefits for a certain period of time.

Simple Benefit Increases
An annual increase in a patient’s maximum daily benefit, monthly benefit or lifetime payment maximum that equals 5% of the original policy’s cost.

Skilled Nursing Care
24-hour nursing or rehabilitative care that is performed by skilled medical personnel within the patient’s home or at a designated facility.

Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF)
24-hour care from skilled medical personnel in a state-licensed institutional setting.

Spousal Discount
A discount applicable if both spouses are eligible and apply for coverage.

Third-party Notification
A notice that goes to a patient-chosen relative, friend or professional (such as a lawyer or accountant) that process that alerts you when your coverage is about to lapse due to a failure to pay premium.

Waiver of Premium
An insurance policy provision that relieves patients from having to pay premiums while receiving benefits.