Glossary of Healthcare Terms

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C Corporations

Corporations with three tiers of authority owners (shareholders), a board of directors, and officers. Through issuance of stocks, physicians can become shareholders or sell their shares without disrupting the corporate infrastructure.


A taxable entity where earnings given to shareholders are subject to double taxation as corporate earnings and as personal dividends.


A slang term used to describe the top tier of decision-makers within an enterprise, based off the first letter of their title, e.g. C.E.O., C.M.O, C.O.O., etc.


Double serpent winding around a staff; a symbol for medicine.

Cancer Treatment Centers

A facility which provides treatment for the chronic condition and focuses on disease management; often provides chemotherapy and radiation therapy.

Capital Asset Pricing Method

A technique that defines the riskiness of an investment relative to the overall riskiness of the market, resulting in the assumption that all things being equal, investors will require greater compensation for greater risk.

Capitalization Rate

Any divisor (usually expressed as a percentage) used to convert anticipated economic benefits of a single period into value.


Capitation is a pre-paid reimbursement method that pays a provider a set price for providing medical services to a defined population for a defined set of services, regardless of service utilization. Providers must manage the financial risk of providing adequate care by calculating the expected volume of referrals, the average cost, and their ability to control utilization.


A service that is separated from all insurance risk and is covered by a separate contract between the insurer and the carve-out vendor.

Cash Flow

Cash that is generated over a period of time by an asset, group of assets, or business enterprise. It may be used in a general sense to encompass various levels of specifically defined cash flows. When the term is used, it should be supplemented by a qualifier (for example, "discretionary" or "operating") and a specific definition in the given valuation context.

Cash Flows

Reported net income of a corporation plus amounts charged off for depreciation, depletion, amortization, and extraordinary charges to reserve accounts for the particular year under consideration.

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)

An agency within the US Department of Health and Human Services responsible for the administration of Medicare, Medicaid, and other programs.

Certificate of Need (CON)

The formal justification of capital expenditures from a governmental health care agency, especially for a new specialty hospital, outpatient center, medical clinic, and so forth.

Certified Nurse-Midwives (CNMs)

Nurse-midwives and CNMs provide primary healthcare services to women (before, during, and after pregnancy) and medical care to newborns for a month after their birth. Once a NM passes the certification exam, he or she becomes a CNM and joins the professional group.

Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs)

CRNAs are ARPNs trained in the provision of anesthesia services as it relates to surgical, labor and delivery, and pain management.
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