Dave Brat

Health savings accounts: Another conservative 'reform' nostrum that chiefly benefits the rich

Health savings accounts: Another conservative 'reform' nostrum that chiefly benefits the rich

With Obamacare repeal-and-replace on the table, a favorite healthcare “reform” of Republicans and conservatives is about to have another day in the sun: health savings accounts. They sound good — tax-exempt personal slush funds that can be used to pay out-of-pocket medical expenses — but for the average person they’re almost useless and for the healthcare system they’re potentially disastrous. 

HSAs were not originally conceived as a solution to the average person’s healthcare needs. They were pushed in the 1990s as a profit generator for an insurance company with a direct line to the eardrums of then-House Speaker Newt...

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