Weekly HSA News – June 20, 2022

News from Washington
Democrats Face Congressional Rout Amid Historically Terrible Headwinds
Democrats knew the first midterm election of President Biden’s tenure in office would be a challenge. But the cascade of catastrophe has even the most optimistic Democratic Party strategists and pollsters staring into an unprecedented abyss. Their standing, about five months before voters head to the polls, is worse than it has been for any president in modern times, by almost any indicator.   Read More
HSA Studies & Analysis
Study Contends That HSAs Have Failed to Deliver. Is This Accusation Accurate?
A recent article in Health Affairs criticizes Health Savings Accounts for failing to live up to their promise. It’s important to examine such articles critically. Too often, critiques of any effort are inaccurate or grossly distorted. Let’s examine the criticisms of Health Savings Accounts contained in this article and provide some perspective.   Read More
Health Savings Accounts and Health Care Costs: While You Were Sleeping
The nearly 20-year-old tale of HSAs continues to intrigue and annoy ideologues at both poles of the health policy spectrum. However, their arguments about these tax-advantaged spending accounts tied to high deductible insurance have evolved. The only consistency involved centers on whether you are for or against them.   Read More
Health Savings Accounts and Health Care Costs: While You Were Sleeping, Part II
After nearly 20 years since their launch in 2003, are HSAs working as intended? A new study in the June issue of Health Affairs insists that HSAs have failed to meet their promise to increase cost consciousness by health care consumers and thereby improve the efficiency of health care services. Unfortunately, the study starts with the wrong premises and questions in misunderstanding the political history behind HSAs. It then neglects consideration of better answers to some valid concerns about how HSAs operate.   Read More
HSA Industry Best Practices
Engage Your Employees in Their Health and Wealth Through Benefits
HSA Bank’s 2022 Health & Wealth Index reveals that people are still moderately engaged in their personal health and wealth, valuing the many benefits that support them and their families. The report also highlights the continuing need for employers to increase employee awareness, understanding and confidence in their physical, mental and financial well-being.   Read More
The HSA Market
The Case for HSAs: How These Accounts Work Overtime to Improve Health and Wealth
HSAs have become increasingly valuable considering how healthcare inflation is impacting employee contributions and out-of-pocket costs of financially fragile Americans. HSAs are ideal for workers who are unprepared for everyday expenses, let alone unexpected out-of-pocket medical expenses. Done right, an HSA strategy will better prepare participants for out-of-pocket costs.   Read More
GV, Other Investors, Pour $27M into the ‘Expedia for Medical Care’
Online healthcare marketplace Sesame closed a $27 million Series B funding round on June 14, bringing its total funding to $75 million. David Goldhill, CEO of the New York City-based startup, said the company is “an Expedia for medical care” because patients can buy the care they want directly online, without the middleman of an insurance company.   Read More
HSAs & Retirement
Can Early Retirees Buy Coverage with HSA Funds? Answer: Yes and No.
Regardless of the reason for ceasing to work before age 65, early retirees have a lot of financial considerations to weigh (whether they do so or not). And medical coverage should be near the top of that list. Here are some important considerations for early retirees who’ve funded a Health Savings Account.   Read More
3 Better Ways to Save for Retirement Than a 401(k)
Once you’ve maxed out your 401(k) match, you might want to shift your retirement savings elsewhere before socking away more inside that plan. Given that healthcare costs tend to be a significant expense for seniors, an HSA can be a very valuable benefit that can help keep those net costs much more in check. Once you reach age 65, that money can also be withdrawn for any reason with no penalties.   Read More
Maximizing Your HSA
Savvy Strategies for Your Health Savings Account
One major advantage of the HSA is that you’re putting money in pre-tax, allowing it to grow tax tree, and then withdrawing it tax-free as long as you have a qualifying medical expense. These tax savings, combined with the investment potential of the account, can add up over the years. One investment strategy for your HSA is to max out the amount you can contribute each year.   Read More
HSAs Provide Consumers Needed Relief from Record Inflation
Government statistics for inflation have confirmed what consumers already know – the cost of everything is going up, by a lot! Americans have felt the pinch at the gas pump, the grocery store, and other aspects of our daily lives. Fortunately, Health Savings Accounts offer some relief from higher inflation, and recent changes announced by the Internal Revenue Service will help even more.   Read More
Fighting Inflation with HSA Investments
Inflation is currently at an all-time high, and what’s even scarier is that healthcare inflation is generally between 2 and 2.5 times as much as overall U.S. inflation. While these statistics are a little sickening, take comfort in the fact that your HSA is your most important asset in the fight against rising healthcare costs.   Read More
Consumer-Driven Health Care
Under 30? Here Are 3 Smart Money Moves You Can Make Today
If you’re under the age of 30, you are uniquely positioned to take advantage of a long time horizon before retirement. By strategically saving and investing, you can build your financial future. While saving is one factor of financial success, another important factor is tax liability. One strategy is to use an HSA to save today and spend tomorrow, taking advantage of tax-free growth.   Read More
Preventive Care May Be Free, but Follow-Up Diagnostic Tests Can Bring Big Bills
Under the Affordable Care Act, many preventive services are covered at no cost. That means patients don’t have to pay the normal copayments, coinsurance, or deductible costs their plan requires. But if a screening returns an abnormal result and a health care provider orders more testing to figure out what’s wrong, patients may be on the hook for hundreds or even thousands of dollars for diagnostic services.   Read More
Sick and Struggling to Pay, 100 Million People in the U.S. Live with Medical Debt
More than 100 million people in America are beset by a health care system that is systematically pushing patients into debt on a mass scale and is far more pervasive than previously reported, a new investigation shows. That is because much of the debt that patients accrue is hidden as credit card balances, loans from family, or payment plans to hospitals and other medical providers.   Read More