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February 2008 return to the table of contents

HSA Usage Leads To Inadvertent Payment Of Ineligible Services By Some

Almost half of Health Savings Accounts (HSA) users surveyed said they had made an error in their purchase of eligible healthcare services.

A survey by this newsletter's parent, Information Strategies, Inc. (ISI) of 201 users during January and February revealed that 47% had detected or were told of an error in usage.

In almost all cases, respondents said the error was inadvertent and was either corrected by their insurance provider or they themselves identified and corrected.

When asked, respondents said they utilized advisory information from a variety of sources and thought the services or materials provided were covered under HSA rules.

Most of the errors were in purchase of drugs or other medical supplies associated with their medical treatment.

Among the items most cited were:

  • Bandaids and OTC products
  • Items proscribed by physicians not associated with an illness
  • Massage treatments
  • Travel expenses

Three of four respondents said they had reimbursed their HSA account when told of the ineligibility of the charges.

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