As more organizations add high deductible health plans to their benefits offerings, the need to clearly communicate the value of Health Savings Accounts (HSA) has increased. According to Devenir, at the end of 2018, the total number of health savings accounts were over 25 million (13% increase from 2017), with $53.8 billion in assets. HSA contributions have increased an incredible 22% from 2017 to 2018 ($33.7 billion contributed in 2018).
Benefits professionals know how difficult it can be to communicate effectively about HSAs since everyone has a different level of understanding and learns differently. Communication is key for engaging more employees with their HSAs and truly helping them get the most out of them. HSA communication can include using different channels like email, direct mail, enrollment meetings, signs, social media, team meetings, and flat screens. Communication can also be delivered via a data-driven benefits decision support tool like Tango Decision Assist TM. Tango Decision Assist helps employees select the best plan for their needs, includes HSA tax savings in plan cost estimates, and includes an HSA retirement calculator to help employees predict how their HSA contributions can grow over time.
HSA Communication should cover everything from explaining basic information like “what is an HSA” to “how to invest funds”.
What is an HSA?
An HSA allows you to save pre-tax money to pay for qualified medical expenses. The idea is to lower your overall healthcare costs by using the HSA funds for such things as deductibles, co-payments, coinsurance, and other expenses. You can only contribute to an HSA if you are in enrolled in a High Deductible Health Plan (HDHP).
What are the contribution limits for HSAs?
For 2019, you can contribute $3500 for an individual or $7000 for a family. For 2020, the contributions increase to $3550 and $7100, respectively.
What are the benefits of an HSA?
- Triple tax advantage:
- contributions are pre-tax
- assets in your account typically grow tax-free (federal level)
- funds can be withdrawn tax free if used on qualified medical expenses
- Your unused money rolls over at the end of the year
- There are many qualified medical expenses
- Others can contribute to your account
- Contributions made with after-tax dollars can be deducted from your gross income on your tax return
- You can use your HSA as an investment strategy for retirement
- If you change insurance or jobs your money is kept in the account to be used in the future
- Retirement- Once you turn 65, you can withdraw HSA funds for non-health care expenses (& pay federal income taxes)
- Most HSAs issue a debit card for your convenience
Tango also provides information you can share with your employees and other resources you may find helpful when creating communication plans for HSAs and HDHPs.
How to Communicate About HSAs to Your Employees
Check out our strategies and tips to help communicate about the importance of HSAs to your employees.
HSA Communications for Your Employees
Use these resources to help educate your employees about HSAs and how to get the most out of them.
HSAs and High-Deductible Health Plans go hand-in-hand. See our resources explaining HDHPs and why HSAs are key to their success.