For more than 70 million Americans, flexible spending accounts (FSAs) and health savings accounts (HSAs) help pay for everyday health costs like doctor visits and co-payments, surprise medical bills, and thousands of qualified medical products that consumers use every day. These accounts have been made all the more vital during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic, where account holders have turned to their FSAs and HSAs to help cover the costs of virus preparedness items and medical services.
But when these same Americans tried to use their FSAs and HSAs to cover the costs of masks, gloves, hand sanitizer and other essentials recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as part of their guidelines for protection against COVID-19, they were shocked to find out that these products were not eligible. Today, personal protective equipment (PPE) has not been formally deemed a qualified "medical care" expense under an FSA or HSA by the IRS. In the midst of a once-in-a-lifetime public health crisis, we believe that PPE satisfies the IRS's regulations and clear guidance to make these products FSA and HSA eligible must be provided soon to give Americans more options to help safeguard the health and well-being of them and their families.
Sign our petition to make PPE FSA and HSA Eligible
We call on Congress and the IRS to correct this massive gap in FSA and HSA eligibility and allow account holders to use their tax-free funds to purchase these much-needed necessities.
A bill has been recently introduced by Rep. John Curtis in the House Ways and Means Committee called HR 8450, which would allow for masks, disinfectant products and hand sanitizer to be purchased with FSA and HSA funds through the end of the year in which "the Secretary, after consultation with the Secretary of Health and Human Services, determines that the COVID-19 public health emergency has terminated". This would provide an invaluable service to millions of American families who need every resource to protect themselves during this public health crisis.
But real action starts with your voice: here's how you can help Americans buy these much-needed essentials:
Sign our petition today to lend your name to the millions of FSA and HSA users who should be able to purchase medical necessities like PPE with their tax-free dollars.
Want to go even further?
Visit TaxFreeBetter.com and use our form letters to send a personalized letter to your member of congress. Simply click the "Contact Your Member of Congress" tab at the bottom of the page and follow the directions to voice your concerns to your representative directly.
Sadly, the COVID-19 public health crisis in the U.S. is still on-going, which means our fellow citizens should have every option available to them to protect themselves, their families and their neighbors through the use of PPE, especially with funds designed exclusively to cover medical expenses.
Join us in this effort to make PPE a qualified "medical care" expense to help continue the fight against COVID-19 and make consumer-directed healthcare more versatile and beneficial for millions of American families.