HealthEquity blog

Do CDH plans really work?

Posted by HealthEquity on Feb 21, 2019 11:31:48 AM

The cost of healthcare continues to steadily rise year over year. In an environment of escalating premiums, many employers are in search of alternatives to the status quo. Whether the solution is a lower cost plan or increased premium share with employees, decision makers are doing the best they can to retain employees and remain profitable.

Consumer directed health plans (CDHPs), paired with a health savings account (HSA) are trending higher among many employers with growth of 11.2% from 2017 to 2018. These plans with lower premium costs are coupled with a new philosophy which brings comparison shopping and savvy consumerism into the healthcare space. If healthcare consumers have “more skin in the game,” i.e. paying more of their out-of-pocket costs, they will shop around for the best deal on doctor visits, prescription medicines and more. It sounds good in theory, but does it really work? Some actuaries say yes.

 

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Topics: HSA, tax savings, 401(k), HSA contributions

HSAs and last-minute 2018 tax deductions

Posted by HealthEquity on Feb 14, 2019 8:27:00 AM

“In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” – Benjamin Franklin

Historically, April 15 isn’t the best day. Abraham Lincoln died on April 15, 1865. The Titanic sank on April 15, 1912.

And, of course, April 15 is usually Tax Day in the United States — the day when individual income tax returns are due to be submitted to federal and state governments. This reason alone makes April 15 a day that many Americans dread.

While filling out your tax forms may not be the most fun thing to do, there is a silver lining:

You can still contribute to your health savings account (HSA) for 2018 before April 15, 2019 (or before you file your taxes, whichever comes first) and count the contribution as a last-minute tax deduction toward your 2018 income tax filing.

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Topics: HSA, tax savings, HSA questions, HSA spending

Being savvy with HSAs and consumer driven healthcare (CDH)

Posted by HealthEquity on Jan 31, 2019 8:18:00 AM

One of the best ways to talk to your employees about how they can save money on healthcare expenses is to pose a hypothetical situation like the following:

Ask them to think about the last time they purchased a car. Did they go to any random dealership and purchase the first car they saw? While it is possible that some people purchase cars that way, the much savvier approach is for consumers to list the needs they have when it comes to a car, research the best prices and places to buy, then go to the dealership and purchase the car. This approach allows them to save money while still getting the best car that fits their needs.

Now, take the hypothetical situation and compare it to healthcare. While choosing healthcare options may not be as simple as purchasing a car, consumers (i.e. your employees) have more options than they might think when it comes to deciding how they spend their healthcare funds — especially if they have a health savings account (HSA).   

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Topics: HSA, Employers, tax savings, HSA questions, HSA spending

How to position consumer directed healthcare and HSAs with your employees

Posted by HealthEquity on Jan 24, 2019 8:07:00 AM

For employers, there has been a monumental shift in the healthcare marketplace from higher cost, traditional plans to high deductible or consumer directed health plans (CDHP). Between 2007 and 2018, CDHP adoption has increased 264%. CDHPs and health savings accounts (HSAs) allow employers to save on premium costs and taxes while empowering employees to become more educated and involved in their healthcare decision making.

As these plans continue to grow in popularity, adoption and implementation, it’s important for employers to properly position CDHPs and HSAs with employees. With so much misinformation around, employees may be confused and apprehensive about enrolling in these types of plans. Here are a few ways to help your employees embrace consumer directed health plans.

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Topics: HSA, Employers, HSA investing, tax savings, HSA questions

2019 FSA contribution limit increased

Posted by HealthEquity on Nov 15, 2018 3:37:24 PM

It’s official. The IRS has just announced that for 2019, individuals can contribute $2,700 to their FSA. That is an increase from the 2018 limit of $2,650. The FSA increase also applies to limited-purpose FSAs (LPFSA) that is limited to vision and dental services, which can be used in cooperation with a health savings account (HSA).

An FSA empowers employees to pay for qualified medical expenses with pre-tax funds. FSAs are popular accounts because of the tax benefits they provide to employees and to their employers.

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Topics: HSA, Employers, tax savings, HSA contributions, FSA, FSA contribution limit

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