Glossary - L

This glossary explains terms in the Medicare program.

L

Large group health plan

In general, a group health plan that covers employees of either an employer or employee organization that has at least 100 employees.

Lifetime reserve days

In Original Medicare, these are additional days that Medicare will pay for when you're in a hospital for more than 90 days. You have a total of 60 reserve days that can be used during your lifetime. For each lifetime reserve day, Medicare pays all covered costs except for a daily coinsurance.

Limiting charge

In Original Medicare, the highest amount of money you can be charged for a covered service by doctors and other health care suppliers who don't accept assignment. The limiting charge is 15% over Medicare's approved amount. The limiting charge only applies to certain services and doesn't apply to supplies or equipment.

Living will

A written legal document, also called a "medical directive" or "advance directive." It shows what type of treatments you want or don’t want in case you can’t speak for yourself, like whether you want life support. Usually, this document only comes into effect if you’re unconscious.

Long-term care

Services that include medical and non-medical care provided to people who are unable to perform basic activities of daily living, like dressing or bathing. Long-term supports and services can be provided at home, in the community, in assisted living, or in nursing homes. Individuals may need long-term supports and services at any age. Medicare and most health insurance plans don’t pay for long-term care.

Long-term care hospital

Acute care hospitals that provide treatment for patients who stay, on average, more than 25 days. Most patients are transferred from an intensive or critical care unit. Services provided include comprehensive rehabilitation, respiratory therapy, head trauma treatment, and pain management.

Long-term Care Ombudsman

Long-Term Care Ombudsman are advocates for residents of nursing homes, board and care homes, assisted living facilities, and similar
adult care facilities. They work to resolve problems of individual residents and to bring about changes at the local, state, and national
levels that will improve residents’ care and quality of life. They may be able to provide information about home health agencies in your area.


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Note

This glossary explains terms in the Medicare program, but it isn't a legal document. The official Medicare program provisions are found in the relevant laws, regulations, and rulings.