Learn What Acronyms Mean

It can be hard to keep track of all the acronyms you need to know about your health coverage.

We've compiled a list of the most important ones so you can quickly look up anything you don't know as you make the most of your health insurance plan.

If you need definitions of important terms, visit our Glossary.

ACA: (Patient Protection and) Affordable Care Act

ACO: Accountable Care Organization

AD&D: Accidental Death and Dismemberment

ADA: American with Disabilities Act of 1990

ALOS: Average Length of Stay

AMA: American Medical Association

APTC: Advanced Premium Tax Credit

ASC: Ambulatory Surgery Center

Auth: Authorization

BOI: Bureau of Insurance

CDHP: Consumer-Directed Health Plan

CHAMPUS: Civilian Hospital and Medical Program of the Uniformed Service. Now known as Tricare.

CHIP: Children's Health Insurance Program

CIN: Clinically Integrated Network

CMS: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (previously HCFA)

COB: Coordination of Benefits

COBRA: Consolidated Omnibus Reconciliation Act (extension of coverage)

COI: Certificate of Insurance

CPT: Current Procedural Terminology (Level 1 codes)

DMAS: Department of Medical Assistance Services

DME: Durable Medical Equipment

DOL: Department of Labor

DOS: Date of Service

E & L: Exclusions and Limitations

EAP: Employee Assistance Program

EMT: Emergency Medical Technician

ENT: Ears, Nose and Throat

EOB: Explanation of Benefits

EOC: Evidence of Coverage (HMO / POS Plan Documentation)

ER: Emergency Room

ERISA: Employee Retirement Income Security Act

FAMIS: Family Access to Medical Insurance Security Plan

FDA: Food and Drug Administration

FEHBP: Federal Employee Health Benefit Plan

FFS: Fee for Service

FMLA: Family and Medical Leave Act

FSA: Flexible Spending Account

HDHP: High-Deductible Health Plan

HEDIS®: Health Plan Employer Data and Information Set

HIPAA: Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act

HMO: Health Maintenance Organization

HRA: Health Reimbursement Account

HSA: Health Savings Account

ICU: Intensive Care Unit

IRF: Inpatient Reading Fee

IUD: Intrauterine Device

IV: Intravenous

JCAHO: Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Hospital Organizations

LOS: Length of Stay

LPN: Licensed Practical Nurse

LTD: Long Term Disability

Max: Maximum

MD: Medical Doctor

MOOP: Maximum Out of Pocket

MRI: Magnetic Resonance Imaging

NAIC: National Association of Insurance Commissioners

NCQA: National Committee for Quality Assurance

NIMH: National Institute of Mental Health

Non-par: Not participating (out-of-network)

NPI: National Provider Identifier

OB: Obstetrician

OOA: Out of Area

OOP: Out of Pocket

OSHA: Occupational Safety and Health Act

OTC: Over the Counter

OV: Office Visit

P&T: Pharmacy & Therapeutics Committee

Par: Participating

PCMH: Patient Centered Medical Home

PCP: Primary Care Physician

PHA: Personal Health Assessment

PHI: Protected Health Information

POA: Power of Attorney

POS: Point of Service

PPACA: Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act

PPO: Preferred Provider Organization

Pre-auth: Pre-Authorization

Pre-X: Pre-existing Conditions

PSA: Prostate Screening Antigen

PT: Physical Therapy

QHP: Qualified Health Plan

Remit: Remittance

Retro: Retroactive

RN: Registered Nurse

ROI: Release of Information

RX: Prescription

SBC: Uniform Summary of Benefits and Coverage

SF: Self-Funded

SNF: Skilled Nursing Facility

ST: Speech Therapy

STD: Short-Term Disability

TEFRA: Tax Equity and Fiscal Responsibility Act of 1982

TPA: Third-Party Administrator

TRICARE: Managed Healthcare System for military families

UCC: Urgent Care Center

URI: Upper Respiratory Infection

VA Hospital: Veterans Administration Hospital

WC: Worker's Compensation

WH: Withhold

WIC: Women, Infants and Children (supplemental food program)

YTD: Year to Date

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