Because of the individual mandate under the Affordable Care Act, most people must pay a fee if they don't have health coverage that qualifies as "minimum essential coverage." One exception is based on showing that a "hardship" prevented them from becoming insured. If an individual is homeless, recently experienced domestic violence, experienced the death of a close family member, filed for bankruptcy in the last 6 months, or any of several other qualifiers, a “hardship exemption” from the penalty may apply. Hardship exemptions are usually provided for the month before the hardship, the months of the hardship, and the month after the hardship, including up to a full calendar year.
Health Care Benefits
Treatments, devices, and services that a specific health plan covers.
Health Care Choice Compacts
A provision of the Affordable Care Act allowing states to group together and form a compact. Such compacts are designed to allow insurers to offer policies in all participating states, streamlining the approval process.
Health Care Cooperative (CO-OP)
A health organization which is member-run and governed by a board of directors. Individual and small business insurance coverage is provided by co-ops.
Health Care Financing Administration (HCFA)
The previous name for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
Health Care Workforce Commission
A group tasked with studying and making recommendations pertaining to health provider workforce issues.
Health-Contingent Wellness Program
Programs designed to encourage healthy behavior by offering rewards to participants that meet certain standards for health.
Systematic differences in health conditions and treatment due to race, income, language, residency, or other factors.
Health Information Privacy
Requirements designed to ensure that patients' information is not disclosed unnecessarily or inappropriately.
Health Information Technology (Health IT)
Networks and technology that allow for health care organizations to gather, store and share information electronically.