News Alert: Trump Signs $2 Trillion Stimulus Bill with Implications for Consumer-Directed Healthcare

On March 27, 2020, President Trump signed into law a $2 trillion bill to address the economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act includes an expansion of unemployment benefits for the record 3.3 million Americans out of a job and the immediate disbursement of $1,200 checks to Americans who earn less than $75,000 in annual income. Billions of dollars in relief will also go toward the healthcare system, state and local governments, and small businesses.

The Employers Council on Flexible Compensation (ECFC) has highlighted two other provisions from the 880-page piece of legislation that will specifically affect the consumer-directed healthcare (CDH) industry.

Over-the-Counter (OTC) Drugs and Menstrual Care Products

The CARES Act states that consumers can purchase OTC drugs and medicines with funds from their health savings account (HSA), flexible spending accounts (FSA) or health reimbursement arrangement (HRA). Consumers may also receive reimbursement for OTC purchases through those accounts. In addition, menstrual products are now considered a qualified medical expense, meaning consumers can pay for or be reimbursed for these products through an HSA, FSA or HRA. This provision is effective for purchases made after December 31, 2019, and for reimbursements of expenses incurred after December 31, 2019. It does not have an expiration date.

Telehealth

The CARES Act states that “telehealth and other remote care services” below the deductible will be permitted in an HSA-compatible high deductible health plan (HDHP). This provision is effective immediately and will expire December 31, 2021. The bill does not specify what “telehealth and other remote care services” entails, but we will provide updates as we learn more.

We will keep you informed of any other legislative and regulatory activity relating to the COVID-19 pandemic and CDH.


Where can I get my COVID-related regulatory/compliance questions answered?

Watch a replay of our recent webinar, COVID-19: Ask the Regulatory/Compliance Expert, featuring attorney Jason Lacey. We cover a number of topics related to COVID-19 and consumer-directed healthcare – from eligibility of COVID-19 expenses to the possibility of extending runout deadlines.

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