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Posted September 27, 2017

HSA FSA explained


This is a good time for organizations and employees to do a little fall cleaning and run through a healthcare checklist to make sure they are aware of the most current HSA/FSA benefit information.

For Organizations:

Health Savings Accounts

Many companies now at least offer a high deductible health plan option and nearly a third of employees now have a HDHP. The number of HSAs has grown as well. In 2016 Devenir Research reported HSA accounts rose to 20 million, a 20 percent increase from the prior year.

As more employees move to HSAs their needs will differ. Some will be looking to spend their savings accounts on current medical bills, while others may choose to invest their balance to save for future healthcare costs in retirement.

Employers should consider Morningstar’s HSAs ranking criteria. Important aspects to review with HSA service providers include low maintenance fees, ease of access for spending funds, and a range of mutual funds for investing to cover all employees’ needs.

Learn more about the benefits of HSAs from some of our recent blogs:

Flexible Saving Accounts

If your organization hasn’t moved to the carryover option, it’s probably important to consider. According to the 2016 Flexible Spending Account and Health Savings Account Consumer Research study conducted by C+R Research, 60 percent of non-FSA users agree they would sign-up for the benefit if their employer offered the carryover option. This would remove a barrier to adoption for some employees and generate more interest in this benefit.

The same study also found that 90 percent of FSA users agree that saving money tops their list of reasons for having a FSA and 40 percent acknowledge that they would cut back on their medical expenses if they didn’t have a FSA. Since contributions are pretax, FSAs offer employees a smart way to save on healthcare costs.

Learn more about the benefits of FSAs below:

For Employees:

With open enrollment right around the corner now’s a great time to get employees thinking about their current and future medical, dental, and vision needs. Provide employees with a checklist to help ensure they have considered these essential health and wellness activities:

  • Complete an annual review of their healthcare expenses
  • Check their FSA account and determine what needs to be spent by the remainder of the year
  • Plan a flu shot for themselves and family members
  • Book their annual physical and ask about additional vaccines
  • Refresh their FSA qualified items like contact solution, nasal spray and prescription meds. Learn more about what else FSAs cover here.

Source:  The New York Times. The Best Health Savings Accounts for Spending or Investing. July 7, 2017.

WEX Health

WEX Health