By
President
HSA for America

Health Savings Accounts Appeal to Forward Thinking Individuals

June 27, 2005

 

By choosing an HSA, one is betting on themselves, in a way.  If you stay healthy, then with a typical health insurance plan you’re just out a lot of money.  With an HSA, not only did you pay significantly less in premiums, but at the end of the year you have a nice deposit of up to $5,250 sitting in your account.  Money on which you didn’t pay federal income taxes, state income taxes (with the exception of about six states), or social security taxes.

Let’s say a 30-year old man with a family opens an HSA and has a high-deductible health plan that allows him to fund the account with $5,250 each year.  If he takes $1,000 or less out each year for medical expenses, and earns a 10% return on his money, he’ll have $1,422,878 when he retires.  (You can do your own calculations with our HSA Future Value Calculator).

The best way to accumulate this much money in your HSA is to stay healthy, so that you don’t need to access those funds to pay for medical expenses.  The good news is that the vast majority of diseases and disorders people have are the direct result of their lifestyle choices.  High blood pressure, cancer, diabetes, Alzheimers, digestive disorders, endometriosis, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, and more, are all largely preventable.

The average guy doesn’t get it.

The average American lives as if social security, a few prescriptions, and some good luck will take care of him in his later years.  So he saves little for retirement.  He eats packaged foods like French fries, chips, cokes, pasta, and cold cuts.  And over the years he puts on “a few extra pounds”, and he gets out-of-shape, and he gets high blood pressure, and high cholesterol, and eventually heart disease, cancer, diabetes, or Alzheimers.

Insurance companies get it.

Some insurance companies do understand the tremendous impact lifestyle can have on health, and are beginning to institute programs to encourage healthy lifestyles among their customers.  Healthy policyholders will use their coverage less, resulting in lower rates for them, and better customer retention and higher profitability for the insurance company.  Pacificare and its subsidiary American Medical Security have just instituted a new program called HealthCredits, designed to help reward its customers for staying healthy.  The online program provides a health risk assessment, a personalized health-improvement plan, email access to trainers, counselors, and nutritionists, and even credits that can be redeemed for health-related merchandise.

HSA owners get it.

People who open Health Savings Accounts are proactive.  They act ahead of time, and think about how their actions now will affect their future.  That is why they put away tax-deferred money for future possible health expenses, and that is why I think many are also interested in taking a proactive approach to their health.  So in addition to talking about Health Savings Accounts in this newsletter, in the future I will also be giving information and tips about how to be optimally healthy.  Choosing to live an extraordinarily healthy life, and actively making lifestyle changes, is an activity that will bring tremendous returns.  Tax-free, just like an HSA.


 

To your health and wealth!


Wiley Long
President - HSA for America


PS – If you need assistance in choosing a high-deductible health insurance plan, please contact us at 866-749- 2039, or visit our website www.HSAforAmerica.com.

Please visit my new Health Savings Account Blog for daily news, information, and commentary on all aspects of Health Savings Accounts.

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