Thursday September 29, 2016

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Consumer-Driven Health News



Retirees Need $130,000 Just to Cover Health Care, Study Finds

Today's 65-year-olds can expect to spend an average of $130,000 on health care during their retirement, from premiums to co-payments to eyeglasses, according to new estimates. The average single 65-year-old woman can expect to need $135,000 to spend on health care in retirement, while a man will spend $125,000, according to estimates from Fidelity Investments.

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Fiduciary Rule Affects Relationships with HSA Vendors

New regulations that prohibit "conflicted" investment advice given to 401(k) and similar retirement plan participants can also extend to advice given employees enrolled in HSAs through their workplace. Although HSAs are typically structured so that they are not employee welfare benefit plans subject to ERISA and its vast compliance requirements, the DOL's final rule does cover advice offered to participants in non-ERISA plans, including individual retirement accounts and HSAs.

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Bridging the Divide on Health Savings Accounts to Deliver Higher Value Health Care

What is needed is a concerted effort to allow consumer-driven health care and better management of care delivery by providers to work in tandem to drive higher value health care. An important starting point should be deregulation of the use of resources in HSAs. To begin to harness more fully the power of both consumerism and managed care in controlling costs, the rules for HSAs should be modified substantially to allow HSA owners to use their balances to purchase care from integrated systems in more creative ways than on a fee-for-service basis.

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HSAs: The Retirement Savings Tool Most Clients Aren't Using (Yet)

Health savings accounts have been around for more than a dozen years, but until recently they haven’t gotten the attention from financial advisors that many say they deserve. Despite their name, health savings accounts can be as much a retirement savings vehicle as a health care financing plan. That’s because deposits into these plans are pre-tax, grow tax-free and, if used for health care costs, are withdrawn tax-free.

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Check Out Beneifts of Starting a Health Savings Account

An HSA can be easily confused with a FSA. Unlike a FSA, a HSA moves with the account owner. Additionally, there is no “use it or lose it” concept here. Investments into a HSA continue to roll forward year after year and interest continues to accumulate tax-free. An HDHP is not the Cadillac of health plans. However, when combined with the tax benefits of a HSA account, there is great potential for a worthwhile investment.

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