For anyone that has a Health Savings Account (HSA) or a Flex Spending Account (FSA), there’s good news: E-commerce giant Amazon has recently rolled out a FSA or HSA Eligible Medical Supplies & Equipment Store!
This will allow account holders to use their pre-tax dollars to purchase hundreds of different health and hygiene items from the comfort of their online device. Considered by most as a strategic move to compete with their biggest rival in Walmart, who already offered FSA and HSA products, Amazon has started adding more health and wellness products in recent years. One such move was the acquisition of online pharmacy company, PillPack, that specializes in home delivery of prescription and over-the-counter drugs.
For any of the 100 million U.S. Amazon Prime members who are already frequent users of Amazon’s speedy and cost-efficient e-commerce website, the addition of clearly marked FSA and HSA eligible products could make Amazon a one stop shop for those who have an eligible healthcare spending account. However, perhaps the biggest winner in this new development is HSAs themselves. It’s no secret that health care costs have been increasing annually and one of the ways employers are combating the ever-rising costs of health insurance is by offering high deductible health plans that are paired with an HSA. In fact, more than 50% of Americans who have health insurance through their employer have a HDHP. Yet, as is the case with a lot of employee benefits, most employees who have either an HSA or FSA don’t fully understand how they operate or how to best utilize them. Sure, plan holders might be aware that they can use the funds in their account for health purposes and items, but what does that really entail? With Amazon now offering an FSA/HSA store front with clearly labeled and categorized eligible items, it takes the guess work out for those who otherwise wouldn’t have known what they could or could not purchase.
Educating employees on their benefit packages and how they can be properly utilized is one of the biggest challenges company human resource departments face. That said, the announcement of the FSA/HSA online storefront from the US’ largest e-commerce company should go a long way in bringing to light the range and versatility of what FSA and HSAs can offer. Items most plan holders probably didn’t even know were eligible include eye drops, deodorant, lip balm, and even sunscreen. In other words - everyday items that participants are likely buying anyways with traditional payment methods instead. Given that Americans spent $3.6 trillion on healthcare in 2018, it would not be surprising to see Amazon take further steps into the healthcare market in the coming years. To learn more about the advantages of HSAs check out the article here.
If you're looking for more information or assistance with FSA and HSAs, contact our COBRA and HR compliance administrators today!