Weekly HSA News – November 7, 2022

News from Washington
HHS Renews Public Health Emergency for Monkeypox Outbreak  
The Department of Health and Human Services renewed the national public health emergency for the monkeypox outbreak even as cases continue to drop. There are currently no vaccines or treatments specifically meant for monkeypox. The public health emergency for monkeypox was first signed on August 4. Public health emergencies from HHS end after 90 days unless they are renewed.   Read More
Sen. Manchin Calls for Deal on Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid in New Congress  
Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) called for a broad bipartisan deal to protect the solvency of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, popular programs that face serious funding issues over the next few decades. Manchin, who sank Biden’s ambitious $3 trillion Build Back Better agenda last December, has often talked about the financial challenges facing Social Security and Medicaid.   Read More
HSA Compliance Corner
Questions About Medicare and HSAs Keep Surfacing – Part D Collisions  
If you’re funding an HSA, you may be able to defer enrollment in Part A and Part B and incur no future premium surcharges if you remain enrolled on employer-sponsored coverage. But Part D lifetime surcharges are based on different criteria, so group coverage alone isn’t sufficient to waive surcharges. To optimize your financial position, think carefully about the trade-offs in enrolling promptly or deferring enrollment in Part D.   Read More
HSA Best Practices
Are You Making Any of These Four Mistakes During Open Enrollment?  
How do Health Savings Accounts figure into your open enrollment decision? At first glance, the HSA-qualified plan may not look as attractive financially as a plan that offers lower out-of-pocket costs. But it may be the best plan offered. Studying your benefits and doing a little math could freeing up $1,000 to contribute to an HSA to reduce your taxable income and provide funds for future expenses.   Read More
HSA Industry News
Alegeus Unveils High-Yield Feature for WealthCare HSA Solution, Providing Account Holders Lucrative Opportunities to Maximize Fund Values  
Alegeus has partnered with Pacific Life to deliver a new way for account holders to get more out of their HSAs through an innovative enhanced interest option that has the potential to earn account holders up to 10 times their current HSA interest rate, potentially giving them more to spend on healthcare needs now and in the future.   Read More
First Dollar Joins Forces with Morningstar Investment Management to Simplify the Investment Experience for Health Savings Account Holders  
First Dollar is teaming with the Workplace Solutions group within Morningstar Investment Management LLC, a subsidiary of Morningstar, Inc., to simplify the way account holders select investment options for their HSAs. This collaboration will enable First Dollar to deliver a more streamlined investment experience for the members and clients who use its Health Wallet platform.   Read More
The HSA Market
New Survey Shows Health Savings Accounts Growing Amid Skyrocketing Premiums  
A recently released survey provides at least a glimmer of hope for those struggling with high healthcare costs. Health Savings Accounts aren’t just gaining in popularity—they’re also helping to keep down skyrocketing premiums. Amidst the general acceleration in premiums, one type of coverage remains comparatively affordable. According to the survey, HSA-qualified plans offered premiums roughly $1,000 lower than non-HSA offerings for single coverage and nearly $2,000 for family coverage.   Read More
It’s Open Enrollment Season. Have You Taken a Good Look at an HSA?  
Despite their rapid uptake, there’s widespread confusion about how HDHPs work and how best to use the HSAs that are typically offered in conjunction with them. Even employees who are using a “spend as they go” approach to their HSAs should consider using the accounts to take advantage of the tax breaks. If you’ve forgone the HDHP/HSA combo in the past, use open enrollment season to revisit it.   Read More
HSAs & Retirement
Employers Tout HSAs for Retirement Savings, a Pitch Advisers Already Make to Clients  
A recent survey showed that for the most part, HSAs are still being used as spending accounts rather than savings accounts. But employers are catching up with financial advisors. More than a quarter of all employers are promoting HSAs as retirement savings vehicle because the characteristics of the HSA lend themselves to being an investment account.   Read More
Forget the 401(k) — Consider These Retirement Accounts Instead  
Given the right circumstances, a 401(k) can be an extremely effective method of building wealth, but its not a one-size-fits-all approach. If you don’t receive an employer match, there are some alternative strategies to consider. For example, an HSA allows you to set aside pre-tax money toward healthcare costs. If used properly, you’ll never pay taxes on the contributions or the income they generate.   Read More
48% of Millennials and Gen Z’ers Are Investing for Retirement Through this Account — and No, It’s Not a 401(k) or IRA  
According to data from the Charles Schwab 2022 401(k) Participant Study, 48% of Millennials and Gen Z’ers who are offered the option to contribute to a Health Savings Account choose to do so. This move is motivated by the desire to start saving for healthcare-related expenses in retirement.   Read More
Maximizing Your HSA
Get More Out of Your HSA With These 3 Tips  
If you are able to fund an Health Savings Account, it pays to make the most of your account. Here are three tips to help you get more out of your HSA.   Read More
Consumer-Driven Health Care
Cash for Colonoscopies: Colorado Tries to Lower Health Costs Through Incentives  
State employees in Colorado are being asked to be better consumers when shopping for health care services. And if they choose lower-cost and higher-quality providers, they could get a check in the mail for a portion of the savings. The checks can range from less than $50 for a mammogram to thousands of dollars for surgery. In most cases, the money helps offset the employee’s copays, coinsurance, or deductible. But for preventive services like colonoscopies, it’s extra cash in the employee’s pocket.   Read More
Why You May Soon Have to Pay for That COVID-19 Test  
The federal government is poised to stop paying for COVID-19 vaccines, tests and treatments in the coming months, shifting the costs onto the public. Experts say most Americans are not aware that this will happen and will be in for a major case of sticker shock. Instead of free access to tests and treatments like Paxlovid, insurance companies and manufacturers will set the price. The days of free, easily accessible COVID-19 tests will also likely end. Private insurance may not cover over-the-counter tests anymore, and patients may need a prescription first for a PCR test.   Read More