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STAR+PLUS Glossary


  • Appeal

    A request for your managed care organization to review a denial or a grievance again.


  • Complaint

    A grievance that you communicate to your health insurer or plan.

  • Copayment

    A fixed amount (for example, $15) you pay for a covered health care service, usually when you receive the service. The amount can vary by the type of covered health care service.


  • Durable Medical Equipment (DME)

    Equipment ordered by a health care provider for everyday or extended use. Coverage for DME may include but is not limited to: oxygen equipment, wheelchairs, crutches, or diabetic supplies.


  • Emergency Medical Condition

    An illness, injury, symptom, or condition so serious that a reasonable person would seek care right away to avoid harm.

  • Emergency Medical Transportation

    Ground or air ambulance services for an emergency medical condition.

  • Emergency Room Care

    Emergency services you get in an emergency room.

  • Emergency Services

    Evaluation of an emergency medical condition and treatment to keep the condition from getting worse.

  • Excluded Services

    Health care services that your health insurance or plan doesn’t pay for or cover.


  • Grievance

    A complaint to your health insurer or plan.


  • Habilitation Services and Devices

    Health care services such as physical or occupational therapy that help a person keep, learn, or improve skills and functioning for daily living.

  • Health Insurance

    A contract that requires your health insurer to pay your covered health care costs in exchange for a premium.

  • Home Health Care

    Health care services a person receives in a home.

  • Hospice Services

    Services to provide comfort and support for persons in the last stages of a terminal illness and their families.

  • Hospital Outpatient Care

    Care in a hospital that usually doesn’t require an overnight stay.

  • Hospitalization

    Care in a hospital that requires admission as an inpatient and usually requires an overnight stay.


  • Medicaid

    A program that offers health care services to persons who have limited income, are pregnant, and/or persons with disabilities.

  • Medically Necessary

    Health care services or supplies needed to prevent, diagnose, or treat an illness, injury, condition, disease or its symptoms and that meet accepted standards of medicine.

  • Medically Needy Program

    The Medically Needy Program provides Medicaid benefits to children younger than age 19, and pregnant women whose families make too much money for regular Medicaid. This means that the pregnant woman or child may qualify for the Medically Needy Program if they have high medical bills and they do not have enough monthly income to pay these bills. The pregnant woman or child can qualify for this program on a month-to-month basis. Some of these bills may include:

    • Doctor's visits
    • Prescriptions
    • Past medical bills
    • Medical insurance charges

    NOTE: The Medically Needy Program is not for people who qualify for any other Medicaid program.

  • Medicare

    A health insurance program paid for by the federal government, not by the state.


  • Network

    The facilities, providers, and suppliers your health insurer or plan has contracted with to provide health care services.

  • Non-participating Provider

    A provider who doesn’t have a contract with your health insurer or plan to provide covered services to you. It may be more difficult to obtain authorization from your health insurer or plan to obtain services from a non-participating provider instead of a participating provider. In limited cases, such as when there are no other providers, your health insurer can contract to pay a non-participating provider.


  • Participating Provider

    A Provider who has a contract with your health insurer or plan to provide covered services to you.

  • Physician Services

    Health-care services a licensed medical physician (M.D. -Medical Doctor or D.O. -Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine) provides or coordinates.

  • Plan

    A benefit, like Medicaid, which provides and pays for your health-care services.

  • Pre-authorization

    A decision by your health insurer or plan that a health-care service, treatment plan, prescription drug, or durable medical equipment that you or your provider has requested, is medically necessary. This decision or approval, sometimes called prior authorization, prior approval, or pre-certification, must be obtained prior to receiving the requested service. Pre-authorization isn’t a promise your health insurance or plan will cover the cost.

  • Premium

    The amount that must be paid for your health insurance or plan.

  • Prescription Drug Coverage

    Health insurance or plan that helps pay for prescription drugs and medications.

  • Prescription Drugs

    Drugs and medications that by law require a prescription.

  • Primary Care Physician

    A physician (M.D. -Medical Doctor or D.O. -Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine) who directly provides or coordinates a range of health-care services for a patient.

  • Primary Care Provider

    A physician (M.D. -Medical Doctor or D.O. -Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine), nurse practitioner, clinical nurse specialist, or physician assistant, as allowed under state law, who provides, coordinates, or helps a patient access a range of health-care services.

  • Provider

    A physician (M.D. -Medical Doctor or D.O. -Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine), health- care professional, or health-care facility licensed, certified, or accredited as required by state law.


  • Rehabilitation Services and Devices

    Health-care services such as physical or occupational therapy that help a person keep, get back or improve skills and functioning for daily living that have been lost or impaired because a person was sick, hurt or disabled.


  • Skilled Nursing Care

    Services from licensed nurses in your own home or in a nursing home.

  • Specialist

    A physician specialist focuses on a specific area of medicine or a group of patients to diagnose, manage, prevent or treat certain types of symptoms and conditions.

  • SSI

    Supplemental Security Income.


    A Texas Medicaid managed care program for people who have disabilities or who are elderly (over age 65). STAR+PLUS provides long-term services and supports in your home, such as help with daily activities, home modifications and personal assistance services.


  • Urgent Care

    Care for an illness, injury or condition serious enough that a reasonable person would seek care right away, but not so severe as to require emergency room care.

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Enrollment Information

The Texas STAR+PLUS plan specialists can answer questions.

Call us:
1-888-887-9003 / TTY: 711

8:00 am to 8:00 pm local time, Monday – Friday

Steps to Enroll
Face-to-face assessments return
  • As of January 2023 some types of assessments will require a face-to-face visit. This means a United Healthcare staff member will need to visit with you in your place of residency.​
  • Please be advised that missing your assessment could impact your services or eligibility. If you have questions, please contact your Service Coordinator or Member Services.​
  • Call Member Services at 1-888-887-9003, TTY 7-1-1, Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-8 p.m. or email to get help finding a provider or setting up a visit.​
Get the details

Visit the Texas CHIP & Medicaid site for more information on eligibility and enrollment.


For information in alternate formats, like large print, Braille or audio, please call Member Services. Contract information can be found on STAR PLUS Contract Operational (

Member Information

You have access to our member-only website. Print ID cards and more. View our handbook below.

Member information is available in paper form, at no cost, upon request, and sent by the health plan within five business days.

Member website

Do you have other format needs?

We offer our materials in large print, audio files, and Braille. Call us today to let us know if you need information in a different format. 

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