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Invest In Your Future:Health Savings Accounts

Learn more about the growth of the ultimate self-directed health option: the Health Savings Account (HSA)

Health Savings Accounts (HSAs), are an exciting new option for consumers. Similar in structure to IRA's, (Individual Retirement Accounts), they were created by President Bush in response to the rising cost of health care. Implemented January 1, 2004, as part of the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act, they allow us to take health care matters into our own hands and to save money as we do so.

There are many tax benefits to HSAs. For example, the money your employer contributes to your HSA is not included in your taxable income. The money you put in is tax-deductible, even if you don't itemize your returns. Your HSA can also make money for you, generating interest or investment earnings, (also not taxable while in the account).

Perhaps the best thing about HSAs is that they are portable. Gone are the days of employer-dependant insurance. As with an IRA, the individual owns his or her account. If you change jobs, your HSA goes with you. If you become unemployed, you can also use money from your HSA to pay insurance premiums.

HSAs are a great way to cut through the confusion and costs modern health care can generate. Funds placed in them can be used not only cover co-pays, deductibles and prescriptions, but over-the counter drugs and medical products like band-aids. We certainly all want, (and very often need), to save money as health care costs rise. HSAs allow us to do so in a way that we can control and tailor to our own personal preferences. It makes wonderful sense. Who knows better what your health care needs are than you?

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