Account Basics

A Healthcare FSA is a valuable employee benefit that allows you to have pre-tax dollars withheld from your paycheck to pay for un-reimbursed healthcare expenses. It covers not just your medical expenses, but also the expenses of your spouse and tax dependents.

Even with the best health plan, you are likely to have out-of-pocket expenses each year.

A Healthcare FSA can cover medical, dental or vision expenses that you would otherwise pay for out-of-pocket. Qualified expenses typically covered by a Healthcare FSA will include deductibles, coinsurance or copayment amounts for your health plan, eye glasses or contact lenses, dental work and orthodontia, medical equipment, hearing aids and chiropractic care.

Many over the counter items are eligible for reimbursement from a Healthcare FSA:

  1. Eligible - Insulin and health items that do not contain any medicine or drugs (bandages, contact lens solution, hearing aid batteries, diagnostic and testing products, reading glasses, etc.) are eligible and do not require a prescription, letter of medical necessity or doctor's directive.
  2. Eligible with Prescription - Over-the-counter items that contain a drug or medication (cold and allergy medicine, pain relievers, sleep aids, etc.).
  3. Eligible with Letter of Medical Necessity or Doctor's Directive - Dual Purpose items can be used for a medical reason or for general health purposes and require a prescription, letter of medical necessity or doctor's directive. These items include products such as dietary, fiber and weight loss supplements, vitamins, orthopedic shoes and inserts, and snoring cessation aids.

Your employer may limit the expenses your plan reimburses; please contact your Human Resources office for more information. For a list of IRS eligible expenses please, see Qualified Medical Expenses.

Your biggest advantage is the tax savings. Every dollar you set aside in your account reduces the amount you pay in income taxes. Plus, you can be reimbursed for qualified expenses that you are already paying for with after-tax dollars!

  1. Funding. You typically contribute a pre-determined amount to your account. In some cases, your employer may also contribute to employee FSAs. (Please contact your Human Resources office for a copy of your employer's contribution schedule.)
  2. Accessing Funds. When you have an eligible healthcare expense, pay for them with your healthcare payment card, or pay out-of-pocket and request reimbursement online. Remember to always keep your receipts.
  3. Requesting Reimbursement/Substantiating Purchases. Log on to your online account and visit Payments & Reimbursements.
    If your payment was out of pocket, you will click "Create a New Reimbursement" or "Create a New Payment to Provider" and follow the instructions to enter the required information. Then print out your Claim Form and use it as a fax cover sheet to send it and your receipts to the number shown on the form.
    If the purchase was made using a healthcare payment card, you will skip the "Create a New Reimbursement/Payment" process and simply print out the Claim Form for that card purchase. Use the Claim Form as a fax cover sheet and send it and your receipts to the number shown on the form.
  4. Please remember that credit card receipts, non-itemized cash register receipts and cancelled checks cannot be used to substantiate a claim.
  5. Claims Processing. We will process your request and reimburse you according to your elected payment method. Please note that you will receive your money sooner if you use direct deposit.
  6. Account Management. Log in to your online account regularly to check your account balance and access health education tools.

No. One of the main differences between the FSA and the HRA is the source of funding. HRAs are funded solely through employer contributions while FSAs are typically funded by the employee, usually through pre-tax, payroll deductions. Contact your Human Resources office for the specifics of your plan.