With the new benefits year around the corner, employees are likely making plans around their health care including Health Savings Account (HSA) and Flexible Spending Account (FSA) contributions, contemplating providers that they may need to visit and planning for the unexpected. As plans begin to form, employees should review these health care changes that are coming in 2020.
Beginning in 2020, insurance companies now have the options of providing insulin and other statin drugs at a lower cost or to fully cover them. For employees who use their HSA or FSA dollars toward these drugs, they should check with their insurance company on any price changes for 2020.
FSA Limit Increase
For 2019, individuals could contribute up to $2,700 toward their FSA. In 2020, the limit has increased to $2,750. For employees who have already gone through open enrollment for 2020 and have opted to contribute the maximum allotted in 2019 of $2,700 to a Further FSA, their accounts will automatically be indexed up to the 2020 limit.
HSA Limit Increase
Similarly, the federal government increased the amount that you can contribute to an HSA in 2020. The individual coverage limit will increase from $3,500 to $3,550 and family coverage limits will increase by $100, to $7,100. Once members are age 55 and older, they can contribute an additional $1,000 toward their HAS, either individual or family coverage.
Executive Order on Health Care Cost Transparency
President Trump’s June 2019 executive order aims to improve patients’ awareness of price and quality of service in advance of receiving services. The executive order highlights the need to distinguish between (and disclose) what hospitals charge and the rate negotiated between payers and providers, as well as encourage consumers to use price comparison for common, shoppable items. While the executive order is still under consideration, employees should be aware of the cost differences that they can experience at different health care facilities. Comparison tools, like the Pick Your Price tool, can show the cost differences in completing tests and procedures at an outpatient center versus a hospital, for instance. It’s important for employees to understand that a difference in cost does not directly correlate with a difference in quality. Most insurance providers have a tool to compare services and help employees understand the best option for them.
*Daily or regular use prescriptions which are commonly used to treat chronic or long-term conditions are considered maintenance drugs.