NU Online News Service, March 25, 2004, 2:44 p.m. EST – A federal retiree group is opposing efforts to offer a health savings account option to federal employees.[@@]
Adding an HSA option to the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program could end up helping healthier enrollees at the expense of older, sicker enrollees, according to Charles Fallis, president of the National Association of Retired Federal Employees, Alexandria, Va.
“NARFE believes it is wrong to use the best employer-sponsored program in the country as a guinea pig by introducing a scheme that is untested in a large, multiple-option, group health plan,” Fallis testified Wednesday at a hearing of the House Subcommittee on Civil Service and Agency Reorganization, according to a prepared version of his remarks.
An HSA is a personal health account for taxpayers who buy high-deductible health insurance coverage.
President Bush brought HSAs to life Dec. 8, 2003, when he signed the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003. A provision of MPDIMA lets eligible taxpayers deduct HSA contributions from taxable income and spend HSA cash on qualified expenses without paying income taxes on the distributions.