Two strikes against HSAs. “But in many cases, people have evidently signed up not because they are eager to direct their own medical spending but because the plan looked cheap or they had no other insurance option. And at least half of those enrolled have not put money in their health savings accounts. So there will be no money building up for next year’s out-of-pocket expenses “” a big selling point for these health plans.

In addition, many employers have been slow to offer the plans. And companies that do so have been reluctant to encourage worker participation by contributing money to the savings accounts. The employers figure that ‘portability’ means that their money will go out the door with workers who leave.”

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  • DrTony

    Ideally, the company would fund the HSA with what they are saving on premiums. This would ultimately save even more, because patients would often choose to pay out of pocket instead of utilizing their HSA’s. They would, therefore, take longer to meet their deductibles, resulting in fewer claims submitted to the insurance company, less paid out by the insurance company…less cost in terms of premiums.

  • Bob Vineyard, CLU

    Employer funding of the HSA portion varies considerably. Typically smaller employers will bypass funding while larger (500+ employees) will provide at least partial funding.

    The HSA concept is a good one, but the numbers don’t always make sense unless you really dissect the insured portion. In other words, on the surface at least, the premium savings is not significant to justify buying the insured plan AND setting money aside in the HSA.

    The premium savings is more pronounced in a family plan than with a single individual. Older insureds also will see more premium savings than younger ones.