Questions Submitted by the Public, by Date Posted to the Website. Definition of health care provider


A variety of services are considered covered benefits under various health plans. For example, some health plans pay for language translation services performed during medical examinations, adoption services, rent, and other services. Would the entities that furnish these services be considered health care providers?


Although covered by some health plans, the services mentioned above do not meet our definition of health care found at 45 CFR 160.103. We consider health care providers to be entities that provide the services defined in section 1861(u) of the Social Security Act, and the medical or other health services defined in section 1861(s) of the Social Security Act, and any other person or organization who furnishes, bills, or is paid for health care in the normal course of business, as stated at 45 CFR 160.103. Therefore, because the services of a language translator, an adoption agency, and a landlord do not fall under our definition of health care, we would not consider the entities that furnish them to be health care providers as defined in this regulation.

This also applies to other entities that furnish other types of services, which, although covered by some health plans, do not meet our definition of health care. The Department of Health and Human Services is writing final regulations on standards for privacy and security of health data. When adopted, those standards might affect the business associates and workforce members (defined at 45 CFR 160.103) of covered entities. The final regulations on privacy and security and accompanying FAQs will be posted at when they are published in the Federal Register.