Health Insurance Glossary D


Cost-sharing arrangement between an insured person and health insurance company in which the insured person will be required to pay a fixed amount of covered expenses each year before the health insurance company will reimburse for covered health care expenses. Generally, an insured person is responsible for a deductible each calendar year.

Denial Of Claim

Refusal by a health insurance company to honor a request by an individual (or his or her provider) to pay for health care services obtained from a health care professional.


A covered person who relies on another person for support or obtains health coverage through a spouse or parent who is the covered person under a health plan.


The decrease in the value of an item due to age, use or wear and tear. Such devaluation is not covered under a contract of indemnity. However an insurer may agree to provide cover on “a new for old” basis which represents a modification of the principle of indemnity and avoids the need to determine rates and amounts of deprecation when settling claims.

Designated Facility

A facility which has an agreement with a health insurance plan to render approved services (Organ transplants are the most common example.). The facility may be outside a covered person’s geographic area.

Discharge Planning

Medical personnel of a health plan working with the attending physician and hospital staff to assess alternatives to hospitalisation, evaluate appropriate settings for care, and arrange for the discharge of a patient, including planning for subsequent care at home or in a skilled nursing facility. The goal is to determine when patients are ready to go home, and to provide a more comfortable, cost-efficient setting for continued treatment.

Deep vein thrombosis (DVT)

Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a blood clot that forms in a deep vein, usually in the legs but can also occur in the pelvis, arms, or abdomen. Blood normally flows quickly through deep veins, assisted by muscle contractions. When blood flow slows or blood becomes more prone to clotting, a DVT can form, potentially blocking the vein and causing pain and swelling.

Alzheimer’s disease

Alzheimer’s disease typically manifests gradually and results in: - Challenges in learning new information - Disorientation regarding dates or times - Increased likelihood of getting lost, particularly in familiar surroundings

Vascular dementia

Vascular dementia may onset rapidly, frequently following a stroke. Symptoms vary based on the affected brain region and can entail: - Emotional or personality alterations - Increased irritability or heightened emotional response - Memory impairment or cognitive confusion

Dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB)

Dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) presents distinct early symptoms, such as: - Visual hallucinations, perceiving nonexistent objects or entities - Fluctuating levels of alertness

Frontotemporal dementia

Frontotemporal dementia typically progresses slowly and encompasses three distinct types. Initial symptoms vary according to the subtype and can include: - Loss of inhibition, displaying peculiar and inappropriate behaviours, and neglecting self-care - Speech hesitancy and struggles with comprehending lengthy sentences - Forgetfulness regarding words, object names, or their functions


Depression is a mental health disorder characterised by persistent feelings of low mood and/or a diminished interest or pleasure in activities. While it's normal to experience occasional periods of sadness, depression involves prolonged and impactful symptoms lasting for weeks or longer.

DEXA (dual energy X-ray absorptiometry) scan

A DEXA (dual energy X-ray absorptiometry) scan measures bone density to determine their strength. It's used to diagnose osteoporosis (fragile bones) and assess fracture risk due to osteoporosis. The results help your doctor recommend strategies to lower your risk of fractures.


Diuretics, often referred to as water tablets, are medications that increase urine production, helping the body eliminate excess water and salts.

Diverticular disease and diverticulitis

Diverticular disease and diverticulitis are conditions affecting the large bowel. They occur when small pouches (diverticula) form in the bowel wall. Diverticular disease causes symptoms like abdominal pain, while diverticulitis occurs when these pouches become inflamed or infected.

Type 1 diabetes

Type 1 diabetes is a lifelong condition where your body cannot regulate blood glucose (sugar) levels because the pancreas does not produce insulin. As a result, blood glucose levels become too high.

Type 2 diabetes

Type 2 diabetes is a condition where your body struggles to regulate blood glucose (sugar) levels. This can happen because your body either doesn't respond effectively to insulin, a hormone that regulates blood sugar, or it doesn't produce enough insulin. As a result, blood glucose levels become too high.

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