HSA and FSA Funds Can Be Used for Expanded List of OTC Products
New rules eliminates the need for a prescription for many medications used by people with arthritis.
There’s some good news for people with arthritis who use a health savings account (HSA) or a flexible spending account (FSA). In one of the coronavirus relief legislation, Congress included a new provision that allows consumers to use these funds to buy many over-the-counter medicines without needing a prescription. This includes pain relievers, cold, sinus and allergy medicines, sleep remedies, stomach remedies, heartburn medicines, even menstrual products.
Until the passage of the coronavirus relief legislation last week, OTC products did not count as qualified medical expenses unless consumers obtained a prescription and provided a receipt (or other documentation) showing the date of the sale and amount of the charge. This caused significant confusion and increased administrative burdens for patients and consumers. Providers were also being asked to write prescriptions for non-prescription products to fulfill these HSA and FSA requirements.
When Does This New Change Take Effect?
The provision allowed consumers to use HSA and FSA dollars to purchase OTC products effective immediately. And they can also submit expenses for reimbursement on purchased made from January 2020 to current. Many merchants who support FSA and HSA debit cards are updating their processes. So, if you get a charge declined, make sure to keep the receipt and follow up with your insurer for reimbursement.
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