The Internal Revenue Service is giving drug stores and pharmacies at least 6 more months to upgrade their systems to handle health reimbursement arrangement and health flexible spending account debit cards.

The IRS has announced the extension in Notice 2008-104.

The notice deals with efforts to let consumers use health account cards at drug stores and pharmacies without providing receipts or other substantiation.

In most cases, card users will be free from providing receipts only if they buy from stores with payment processing systems that identify qualified health care expenditures.

The original deadline for providing payment-identification systems was Jan. 1, 2009.

The IRS now has pushed the compliance deadline back to June 30, 2009.