Healthcare Glossary

Key healthcare terms

B

Baby teeth
Primary or deciduous teeth of young children: 10 upper and 10 lower.
Balance billing
In balanced billing, you may be billed the difference between what your insurer pays and the fee your provider normally charges.
Base Realignment and Closure Commission (BRAC) site
A military base that has been closed or targeted for closure by the government BRAC.
Basic services
Dental procedures to repair and restore individual teeth due to decay, trauma, impaired function, attrition, abrasion or erosion, basic services may include endodontics (root canals), fillings and periodontics (tissue/bone treatment).
Beneficiary
The person who is eligible to receive or is receiving benefits under an insurance certificate. This person is named by the certificate owner, who is usually the person insured
Beneficiary (Medicare)
The beneficiary is the person who has health insurance through the Medicare or Medicaid program.
Beneficiary (TRICARE)
A beneficiary is a person who is eligible for TRICARE benefits. Beneficiaries include Active Duty Family Members (ADFMs) and retired service members and their families. Family members include spouses and unmarried children, adopted children, or stepchildren up to the age of 21 (or 23 if full-time student at approved institutions of higher learning and the sponsor provides more than 50% of the financial support). Other beneficiary categories are listed in the TRICARE Eligibility section of your handbook.
Beneficiary Counseling and Assistance Coordinators (BCACs)
BCACs are persons at Military Treatment Facilities (MTFs) and TRICARE Regional Offices who are available to answer questions, help solve health care-related problems, and assist beneficiaries in obtaining medical care through TRICARE. BCACs were previously known as Health Benefits Advisors (HBAs). To locate a BCAC, visit the TRICARE BCAC/DCAO Directory.
Benefit accumulations
Amount that has been paid for a covered person during the calendar year or plan year.
Benefit booklet
This is a booklet or pamphlet you receive once you enroll in HumanaDental. It contains a general explanation of the benefits. It is also known as Summary Plan Descriptions.
Benefit period
Benefit period refers to time during which you are admitted and treated at a hospital or skilled nursing facility. The benefit period begins the day you go to the facility and ends when you have not received hospital or skilled nursing care for 60 days in a row. If you go into the hospital after one benefit period has ended, a new benefit period begins.
Benefit plan
A benefit plan covers costs associated with certain dental services. In addition to paying premiums for your benefits, you may be responsible for deductibles, coinsurance, and/or maximums.
Benefit plan document
Generic term for a legal document detailing a member's or group's coverage. This document usually is referred to as a Certificate of Coverage, Certificate of Insurance, or Summary Plan Description.
Benefit summary
A brief description or outline of your plan’s coverage, your benefit summary includes the amounts or percentage you pay for certain services, the amounts or percentage your plan pays, and the services for which coverage is limited or excluded.
Benefits
This is the medical — also dental and pharmacy — care for you and your dependents that's covered by your insurance either directly or through reimbursement.
Benefits (Medicare)
Medicare-approved services provided by an insurance policy are known as benefits. In a health plan, benefits are the coverage amounts for healthcare services you receive, such as doctor’s office visits.
Benefits maximum
This is the highest dollar amount your health plan will pay toward your medical costs over the course of a plan year.
Benefits summary
This refers to a detailed summary of all the benefits available in your plan.
Bicuspid
Permanent teeth between the cuspids (canines) and first molars, bicuspids have two cusps (points) and are used for crushing and tearing food.
Bilateral
This refers to both the right and left sides.
Billed claims
This is the amount providers bill for the services they provide.
Billing provider
Any eligible person, doctor, doctor's office, hospital, dentist, or facility licensed to perform services for our members.
Bitewing X-ray
A bitewing X-ray reveals the crown and the adjacent tissue of the upper and lower jaws on the same film. It is used to detect decayed areas between teeth.
Bitewings
A bitewing is a type of X-ray in which you bite down on X-ray film to allow a dentist to capture images of several upper and lower teeth at one time.
Bleaching
For dental care, this is a technique used to restore a discolored tooth to its natural color.
Board certified
A physician who has graduated from medical school, completed residency, trained under supervision in a specialty, and passed a qualifying exam given by a medical specialty board is considered board certified.
Bonding
Bonding is white dental material that is applied to a tooth to change its shape and/or color. Bonding also refers to how a filling or some bridges are attached to teeth.
Braces
These are metallic bands and appliances used to move teeth for correction of the bite and tooth position.
Bridge
Appliance to replace a missing tooth or teeth, attached to and supported by abutment teeth.
Bruxism
Grinding of teeth during sleep. This occurs in children and adults, and causes abrasion of the tooth enamel.
Buccal surface
Surface of the back teeth next to the cheek.