Should you start a health savings account?

Apr 15, 2005

A number of physicians are interested in learning more about health savings accounts (HSAs)—not only for themselves and their families, but also for their employees and their patients. These accounts provide a tax-free way to set aside money to pay for qualified health-care costs, according to a report in American Medical News (12/20/04).

A number of physicians are interested in learning more about health savings accounts (HSAs)-not only for themselves and their families, but also for their employees and their patients. These accounts provide a tax-free way to set aside money to pay for qualified health-care costs, according to a report in American Medical News (12/20/04).

As part of President Bush's efforts to expand consumer-driven health care, HSAs have been made available to participants with high-deductible health plans, as defined by the Internal Revenue Service. These accounts allow deposited funds to grow-either tracking simple interest or through investments in stocks or money market funds. Moreover, any leftover funds can be carried over year to year.

Already, a number of insurance companies have rolled out, or plan to roll out, health plans that include HSAs. They include Humana Inc., UnitedHealth Group (through its acquisition of Definity Health) and BlueCross BlueShield Association.