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Medical Insurance Glossary

There are many terms and phrases associated with private medical insurance which can sometimes be confusing. To help you understand more about buying a health insurance policy, ActiveQuote has provided a medical insurance glossary to explain the key terms surrounding private health insurance.

Acute Condition: A disease, illness or injury that is likely to respond to treatment that will return you to full health.
Annual Renewal Date: The anniversary of the date your policy starts. When your renewal date is due, ActiveQuote will search the market to make sure you are getting the best policy for your money.
Broker: A health insurance broker works to match applicants with a health insurance company or policy.
Cash Plan: Cash plans provide a cash payment towards your cover rather than paying for the treatment directly.
Chronic Condition: A chronic condition is one that requires ongoing treatment or monitoring, continues indefinitely, has no known cure, or is likely to come back. See our page on chronic conditions for a full definition of this term.
Claim: A notification to your health insurance company requesting payment of an amount due under the terms of the policy.
Co-Payment: A way to reduce your health insurance premium by volunteering to pay a percentage of any claim.
Day patient: A patient who is admitted to a hospital or unit for medically supervised recovery, who does not stay overnight.
Diagnostic Tests: Investigations to determine the cause of symptoms. Include CT and MRI scans, X-rays and blood tests.
Excess: A way to reduce your health insurance premium by volunteering to pay the first part of any claim, up to a fixed number of pounds.
FSA: The Financial Services Authority. Genuine health insurance intermediaries will always state their FSA registration number, and you can check if a company is legitimate by looking them up on the FSA Register at
Full Medical Underwriting: You provide your full medical history on application and the insurance company may exclude cover for pre-existing conditions.
Group Policy: An annual contract of health insurance for a minimum number of employees in a company. ActiveQuote can offer you quotes and advice for a group policy.
Inpatient: A patient who occupies a bed in hospital for a night or longer while undergoing treatment.
IPT: Insurance Premium Tax is a govenment imposed tax on insurance premiums in the United Kingdom, currently at 6%. All premiums quoted by ActiveQuote include IPT.
Moratorium: Application without medical disclosure. Generally, you will not be covered for any conditions that existed in the 5 years prior to taking out the policy but you may regain cover for those if they do not recur during the first 2 years of your new policy. This includes having symptoms of, treatment for or advice about the condition. The moratorium definition may vary from insurer to insurer.
Outpatient: A patient who attends hospital or a clinic but is not admitted as a day patient or an inpatient.
Palliative Care: Palliative care is specialised medical care for people with serious illnesses, and relieves patients from symptoms, pain and stress.
Personal Medical Exclusions: Exclusions or conditions that may be applied to your policy if you are fully medically underwritten on taking out your policy or on transfer.
Pre-existing Condition: These are conditions which you have previously suffered with, sought advice about or received treatment for. See Insurance for Pre-Existing Conditions for more information.
Premium: The sum you will pay to the insurance company either annually or monthly in order to be covered for the cost of private treatment.
Reduced Hospital Cover: A way to reduce your health insurance premium by opting out of receiving treatment at certain premium hospitals.
Six Week Wait: A Six Week Option is offered by some insurance policies. If you opted for this when you took out cover and the NHS is able to provide treatment to you within six weeks, you will be treated on the NHS instead of claiming on your insurance policy. If the NHS is unable to provide treatment within six weeks you will be admitted to a private hospital, covered under your insurance policy. This clause does not normally apply to consultations and tests.
Switch/ CPME: Customers switching from an existing policy to a new one on "switch/CPME" terms will continue to be covered for conditions that arose since taking out their old policy, and will not face any extra exclusions.
Underwriting: When you take out an insurance policy, you will be underwritten on either a Moratorium, Switch, or Full Medical Underwriting basis. The choice of underwriting can affect the price, and may affect in what manner you are covered for pre-existing conditions. We recommend you seek advice from us about which underwriting to choose.

If you still have questions about private medical insurance, compare health insurance policies online now, or call one of our advisors for free on 0800 862 0373.

Glossary of Medical Insurance Terms | Health Insurance | ActiveQuoteHealth insurance can be complicated. Our glossary of medical insurance terms will help you understand the key phrases to find you the best cover in the UK.    tweet it on twittershare with your friends on Facebookshare with your friends on MySpaceBlog it on your LinkedIn profile

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