The Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service recently clarified the types of preventive care benefits that are covered by high-deductible health plans that qualify under the new Health Savings Accounts (HSAs). The guidance also clarifies the interaction between a high-deductible plan and other prescription drug benefits. In addition, Treasury and the IRS have issued “transitional relief for the prescription coverage interaction” as well as “allowing HSAs to reimburse medical expenses incurred” after a high-deductible plan is set up.
The new guidance provides a safe harbor list of preventive care benefits that can be provided by a high-deductible plan, including annual physicals, immunizations and screening services, routine prenatal and well-child care, tobacco cessation, and obesity weight-loss programs. Existing medical conditions are not included in preventive care. Treasury and IRS are still taking comments on whether other benefits–like certain drug cost benefits provided by employee assistance programs, mental health, or wellness programs–should qualify as preventive care.