How the Stimulus Package Will Help HSA and FSA Investors During COVID-19 Outbreak

Mar 14, 2020 | Finance

Millions of American citizens have felt the effects the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has made on the economy. In March, the House of Representatives approved a $2.2 trillion economic stimulus package to make it easier for individuals and families to get the care they need in these trying times.

Those who are enrolled in a high deductible health plan and either health savings accounts (HSAs) or flexible spending accounts (FSAs) will see major changes in what they are allowed to purchase. “The idea is to free up people to get the care they need and physicians to offer services without a lot of extra time and human contact,” says Alison Moore, VP of Health Marketing at HealthSavings.

HDHP Plans Can Cover Coronavirus Costs

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) advised that high-deductible health plans (HDHPs) can pay for COVID-19-related testing and treatment without jeopardizing their status. IRS stated in a release:

“This also means that an individual with an HDHP that covers these costs may continue to contribute to a health savings account (HSA).

… The IRS said that health plans that otherwise qualify as HDHPs will not lose that status merely because they cover the cost of testing for or treatment of COVID-19 before plan deductibles have been met. The IRS also noted that, as in the past, any vaccination costs continue to count as preventive care and can be paid for by an HDHP.”

Insurance Policies w/ Telehealth Coverage Must Waive Deductible Requirements

While there are some restrictions, healthcare insurance policies that provide telehealth coverage must waive deductible requirements for all virtual visits. This applies to both COVID-19 related visits and non-COVID-19 related visits. (Source: JDSupra)

Pre-Approved HSA & FSA Items Are More Relaxed

The IRS has a strict list of what individuals who are enrolled in HSA and FSA plans are allowed to purchase using their pre-taxed funds. In these trying times, the IRS has loosened the strings a bit and is now allowing people to purchase most over-the-counter medications. The IRS is also allowing individuals to purchase feminine hygiene products for the first time ever with their HSA and FSA cards as well. (Source: Barrons)

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