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FSA & HSA Accounts


Understanding FSA & HSA Accounts

When it comes to managing your healthcare expenses, Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) and Health Savings Accounts (HSA) offer invaluable benefits, particularly for optical care. Both FSA and HSA accounts allow you to set aside pre-tax dollars to cover eligible medical expenses, including eye exams, prescription eyeglasses, and contact lenses. There are some key differences, however, between these two types of accounts.

FSA Accounts

What is FSA?
A Flex Spending Account (FSA) is an employer-sponsored benefit that allows you to contribute a portion of your salary to cover qualified medical expenses. The funds you allocate to your FSA are deducted from your paycheck before taxes, which reduces your taxable income.

How does FSA work

  • Funds are generally “use it or lose it,” which means unused funds are lost at the end of the year or by a carryover period (which is usually March 15th).
  • Funds can be used for eye exams, eyeglasses, prescription sunglasses, and contact lenses.
  • Benefits are pre-taxed.
  • You may use these funds with or without your insurance benefits.

HSA Accounts

What is HSA?
A Health Savings Account (HSA) is a tax-advantaged savings account designed to help you save money for medical expenses that are not covered by your health insurance plan.

How does HSA work?

  • The funds don’t have a “use it or lose it” rule and can be rolled over from year to year.
  • Funds can be used for eye exams, eyeglasses, prescription sunglasses, and contact lenses.
  • Contributions are pre-taxed.
  • Use with or without your insurance benefits.

Did you know you can
use your FSA and HSA dollars on:

  • Eyeglasses
  • Prescription
  • Sunglasses
  • Contact Lenses
  • Eye Exams

Frequently Asked Questions About FSA/HSA

Everyone needs eye exams. Regular exams are fundamental to the long-term health of your eyes, even if you believe you have perfect vision, because they may allow your doctor to identify potentially troublesome eye conditions before they become more serious.

Most individuals should receive their first eye exam at 6 months, age 3 and then before entering the first grade, with regular exams every two years after. However, those at greater risk for eye and vision problems should have exams at a frequency recommended by their optometrist.

During the typical eye exam, an optometrist will test your vision and look for a variety of health issues. These issues may include eye-specific conditions – including cataracts and glaucoma – as well as other diseases, such as diabetes. Afterward, you’ll receive a prescription and any further instruction necessary.

Dry eyes are a common eye issue with many causes. The condition is especially common if you’re older than 50, have had laser eye surgery, are a post-menopausal woman or have a range of medical conditions, including diabetes, arthritis, lupus or thyroid disorders. Other causes can include long periods of outdoor work or exposure to computer screens. If you’re experiencing frequent or lasting irritation, it’s important to discuss dry eyes with your optometrist.

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